A few days after the new year began, I was ready to finally be able to study abroad. I packed up three overstuffed suitcases and headed to the airport ready to embark on the trip of a lifetime. I had applied almost a year before and had been preparing for months, but nothing could have prepared me for the roller coaster ride I would be greeted to when I touched down at Heathrow.
When I returned from my five-week trip to London, a lot of friends and family would ask me the million-dollar question — how was London!? However, I had a very difficult time summing up my time there in one sentence. The best I could come up with was simply, it changed my life.
Since the day I was back on American soil, I have become a sort-of study abroad ambassador, trying to convince everyone I meet that a trip abroad will complete their college experience. Hopefully this will convince you…
1. Reasons To Study Abroad – Self Realization
Going abroad made me realize how young our country is the kind of history that lies beyond our shoreline. Learning about Henry VIII from a textbook is much different from standing in the the Tower of London and standing in a room that he once stood in. On the other hand, if the country you travel to is not as advanced as the United States, you’ll feel grateful for the amenities offered to you here.
2. Reasons To Study Abroad – Meeting New People
When you’re abroad, you’ll find that most people will be super friendly when they realize you’re not from there. They’ll want to ask questions and hear about your life in America. Make sure to do the same — you’ll be surprised how much may or may not have in common.
3. Reasons To Study Abroad – Getting To Travel To Other Places
If there is one piece of advice I can offer to someone going abroad for the first time, it would be to take advantage of any down time on your trip. If you have a weekend free of commitments, explore another city nearby or fly to a different country. While in London I was able to take the train to Paris for the weekend, which made my trip even more exciting.
4. Reasons To Study Abroad -Trying New Food
This definitely depends on where you are traveling, but there is always a chance to sample the local cuisine. Take a chance on something you wouldn’t normally try and you might be pleasantly surprised.
5. Reasons To Study Abroad – New Desire To See The World
After I got home, all I wanted to do was go back. I have always wanted to travel, but going abroad truly broadened my horizons and made me realize how much there is to see and do outside the states. Even if spending an extended amount of time abroad seems like the scariest possible scenario, I still invite you to do some research and see what kind of study abroad opportunities are available for you. Good luck!