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Across the Pond

With Someone From Literally Across the Pond

This week on Across the Pond, Kalie McAlexander (Glasgow, Scotland) and Abby Bair (Louisburg, Kansas) got a chance to sit down with Hollie Hall, transfer student from Essex in England.

In this interview Hollie and Kalie got to talk about the difference between being English and being British. “I get annoyed if someone calls me British,” Hollie said. “Because, you know, we’re four separate countries that make up the United Kingdom and we’re three separate countries that make up Great Britain, and so I don’t like being grouped together because those three countries have different histories. We may have the same royal family but you know, Wales, they have their own language. Their signs are in Welsh and English. Some Scottish people speak gaelic. So its a different culture and it is a different way of life in some respect so I find it really annoying to be grouped to another country. It’s just irritating.”
“I think it’s mainly English people that get called British.” Kalie chimed in. “But more by outside countries. And so it’s not as much of an annoyance to Welsh or Scottish people because its not as prevalent to us here. But just to clarify to those listening, Great Britain is the island, and it’s England, Wales and Scotland. That’s Britain. And those people are technically ‘British’. That’s what’s on the passport. But you should identify people by their specific country rather than the collection of countries it belongs to. And definitely don’t call Scottish people ‘British’ cos we might stab you.”
We also got a chance to hear what it was like to grow up in the American school systems from Abby, and the focus America had on its own geography rather than that of the world.  “Whenever we looked at a map, it was like we would rather cut Russia in half just to have the US in the middle.” Abby said, after a surprising adventure on google earth.
Hollie came to the US in 2012 for a year abroad as part of her American Studies degree, and on the show she talked about how in her first year here she became obsessed with the idea of the “American dream” which prompted us to ask her, what is her American dream?“My American dream is what I’m doing right now.” Hollie told us. “I’m going to a really good school, American studies is really good here, and so are the professors. I really like the extracurricular activites on campus, which would barely exist back home…I also feel like here you have the chance to really make a difference in the world, and I like that.”

In the year she spent here in 2012, Hollie fell in love with the school, the town and the people. At the end of her year, Hollie transferred to KU, and she will graduate this spring.

 Tune in to Across The Pond on Tuesdays at 10 PM.