A few years ago, I had the dream of studying abroad on my bucket list, but I thought it was just that – a dream. I wanted to immerse myself in a different culture, but I knew that dreaming versus actually living it out is two totally different things. I knew that no one was going to help my dreams come true, unless I took the initial step towards them. This led me to the day I decided that I was not only going to study abroad, but I was also going to go on an international mission trip (more to come on this!)
I had no plan, I had no budget and I barely had any savings as a poor, college kid. I ended up going to the study abroad office and grabbing some material on the upcoming trips and found out that they had more options than I ever knew about. I decided that a semester long trip was a bit too long for me so I settled on a 2 week excursion to Paris and London. While I am in love with different cultures and exotic places, I figured these two miraculous cities were a great start to international traveling, which I had never done before. Before even leaving the United States, my “class” met every week to complete coursework and to learn about the countries we would be visiting. Therefore, no coursework during the trip was involved!
Only a few months later, in the Spring of 2010, my small class and I were off on a plane to the UK for an experience of a lifetime. I was a mixed bag of emotions, I was excited and I knew a few other people going, but I was nervous as well. I didn’t own a smart phone with a SIM card, I didn’t have any clue how to speak French and all I had was American money, etc. Needless to say, it was a life-changing experience - and I learned a lot. I think I learned as much about myself as I did about the UK and France. I believe that it's extremely important to follow your dreams and I wanted to create this post to let you know why you should study abroad!