Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Tips for Studying Abroad: Part 3

As the last part of the studying abroad tips, I am going to cover culture shock, as well as what should you expect and do while abroad. Here we go!

When you first arrive to wherever you are going, its amazing. You are walking on air, everything seems so unreal and awesome. Then as you start your daily life, things seem different. Everything from taking a shower, going to the grocery store, and even doing laundry will be different. It is hard to put in words how things will be different, but slowly your lifestyle changes, unless you try hard not to. 

My first tip I can give you is to be open to change, and let it happen to you. Of course living a different lifestyle in a different country can be, well, foreign, but it is a great experience and great life changer. Before I went to Rome, I was not very independent, couldn't cook for myself, and never went out to stores alone. After four months in Rome, I traveled around the city exploring on my own, cooked my own meals, and became more confident and independent. Though I definitely changed, some others did not at all, they were stuck in America while in Italy; they remained in their beds, watching movies and shows, and on Skype. Not a fun way to spend four months while you are in a beautiful city.

The time you spend while abroad goes by fast. If you remain inside, you won't be experiencing anything, and honestly, wasting your time and money. So be sure to go outside and experience the city! Of course don't do anything uncomfortable or dangerous, and if you are scared to venture out on your own, ask one of your classmates! Also, if you want to explore the city, definitely look into Rick Steve's books, he outlines sites to see and the history of those places. I loved going to museums and other historical sites, and knowing what I was looking at. 

So here are the tips:

  1. Be open to change and a new and different lifestyle. You will be in a foreign country, don't try to bring America there, live the way they do!
  2. Don't sit inside all day. Yes you may be homesick, but sitting inside all day will make you miss home even more. Change is tough, but it is an experience you don't want to miss!
  3. Venture! Walk around the city, get lost (semi-lost), see the sites! It is a one time opportunity, you want to see the most you can in a short period of time, don't waste it!
So there you go! Just some short tips about studying abroad! Leave a comment or question if you want to know more about studying abroad. 

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