I am a proud UNO Maverick – I love my school, I do. But, I have to admit one of the reasons I chose this university is because I found it relatively cheap (as universities go) and knew I could afford to study abroad. From the moment I started applying to colleges, I KNEW I was going to study abroad. And that’s what I did – the summer after freshman year because I just couldn’t wait any longer.
Now I spend a majority of my time reliving my experience, thinking if I could squeeze in another study abroad trip before I graduate in December, and telling my friends and siblings that they should consider study abroad options.
Studying abroad is a huge résumé booster for those looking for jobs and gifts you with lifelong friends and memories.
I went on UNO’s “History in Italy” summer program for 28 days and let me tell you, I learned SO much – from how to navigate a new place, how to communicate with people who speak a different language than me and how to embrace a simpler life style.
If you choose to study abroad (and you should) here are some tips on what you can expect from the experience:
YOU’LL MAKE NEW FRIENDS
Being forced to live, eat and travel with the same group people in a foreign country, for an extended amount of time has a way of bringing people together like nothing else. You will get close to these people because you depend on them for company and advice, as you probably won’t know anyone in the country you’re visiting and usually cell use is limited. Relationships are formed so quickly that you might even cry when you have to leave them.
YOU’LL EAT A LOT
But don’t worry about gaining weight because you’ll more than likely be walking a lot too. You’ll be walking around the city you’re exploring, walking through museums, shopping, walking around parks and walking to and from the restaurants (where you’ll eat more than you can handle every.single.time.)
YOU’LL APPRECIATE YOUR LIFE BACK HOME MORE
If you’re studying abroad I can promise you, you won’t be staying in 5-star hotels every night, maybe not even at all. You will more than likely be sleeping in a few hostels mixed with a few nice hotels. But it won’t matter because you’ll spend almost no time at all in these places as you’ll want to be outside all the time. Still, when you return home you’ll be glad to be welcomed by the comfort of your own bed again.
YOU’LL WANT TO GO BACK
You’ll realize how cool it is to experience different cultures and how you can add value to your own community through the things you experienced while abroad. You’ll miss the close friendships you created and all the different food you got to try. You’ll more than likely look at more study abroad options and see when you can fit another one into your schedule.
Have you studied abroad before? I want to know!
Anything I missed? Let me know in the comments below!