I’m a year four Medical Student at the University of Leeds. I spent six weeks on placement in Sri Lanka where I worked in the General Surgery, Anesthetics and General Medicine departments of Kandy’s biggest hospital.
I chose Work The World for my elective because I wanted to experience a different culture, but wasn’t an experienced traveler and I felt that I needed support for my first trip outside of Europe. Older students from my University have also chosen Work the World for their electives in previous years and strongly recommended them to me.
THE IN-COUNTRY SUPPORT PROVIDED BY THE WORK THE WORLD TEAM IN SRI LANKA IS UNBELIEVABLE. AT THE SAME TIME I HAD AS MUCH FREEDOM AS I WANTED TO EXPLORE BEAUTIFUL SRI LANKA, WHILST ALWAYS FEELING SAFE IN THE KNOWLEDGE THAT SOMEONE WAS THERE FOR ME IF NEEDED.
Living in the WtW house with other healthcare students from different countries was an amazing experience, and I had no idea how much I would value it! Six weeks is a long time to be away from home and loved ones but the business and diversity of the house meant I was never lonely - there was always someone to talk to and learn from, and I definitely feel like I’ve made friends for life! It was also good to have other students here for support to talk to after a day on placement, especially given the cultural differences we experienced every day.
Taking a weekend trip to Sri Lanka’s cultural triangle was definitely one of my favorite experiences. So much is packed into three days, but afterwards you definitely feel like you’ve experienced Sri Lanka’s rich and distinct culture. I never imagined six weeks ago that I’d be cycling round the ancient city of Dambulla, then washing an elephant in the afternoon before going on an amazing Elephant Safari the next day! The support given to you when planning the weekend is amazing and I know that had I been in Sri Lanka without Work The World I would not have done half of the things I did and made such fantastic memories along the way!
The in-country support provided by the Work The World team in Sri Lanka is unbelievable. From helping me extend my visa when in country to being a phone call away should any questions or problems arise, their assistance has been invaluable. At the same time I had as much freedom as I wanted to explore beautiful Sri Lanka, whilst always feeling safe in the knowledge that someone was there for me if needed.
I would absolutely recommend Work The World to other students, especially those who want to do an elective in an area outside of their comfort zone. I felt as happy and safe here as I do back home in the United Kingdom, but I have definitely broadened my horizons and had the trip of a lifetime doing so! I now have the confidence to travel further than I have before, and my medical experience has by far outstretched anything I could ever have hoped to achieve at home.