As a passionate linguist and Modern Languages major, travel provides the language and culture immersion which is one of the most Important aspects of my studies. Language immersion brings about the opportunity to master the languages I have been studying since high school and hopefully will one day use effortlessly. Cultural immersion gives me the opportunity to broaden my horizons. Lessons learned from being abroad can be applied in real life situations. Experiencing a different culture first hand changes you as a person, it opens you up to be willing to experience things outside of your personal bubble. It’s important that I gain this trait while abroad because the world needs more openminded people especially now in a time where the people of the world need to stand together. I hope to gain better communication skills especially in the Spanish language that I can apply in the future for my education and profession. I want the real world experience and I want to apply what I have learned in my classes here at Plymouth State in a real setting. In return, I am excited to share the American culture with my host family in Costa Rica and give them a positive experience while hosting me whether they have done it before or not. I want to leave behind an impression in Costa Rica and encourage students there to study abroad if they get the opportunity.
My hopes are that studying abroad will open my eyes to a new cultural experience. I currently work for the international relations office at my school. I hope to come back with new ideas for the office on how to expand the student’s knowledge of studying abroad. I want to advertise and show others that any opportunity they have to study abroad should be taken for their benefit. I want to go into freshman classrooms and do a presentation on study abroad so the thought will be planted in their head from the beginning and that it won’t be too late. The main issue facing students when they come into the office is that they think it’s too late for them to go or it won’t work because of their major which is rarely the case. I want to share my experience with faculty and staff so that they will encourage the students they advise to study abroad. The international relations department at my school works very hard and I want it to get the recognition that it deserves.
Over all I am very excited and enthusiastic about my opportunity to go abroad. I think it will change me as a person. I hope it will bring in new thoughts and ideas that I can share with others. I think study abroad is the right option for me and for my personal and professional development. One day I hope to look back on my experience and realize all that I have taken from it and the benefits studying abroad has. So many kids before me have gone and they come back radiating with plenty of stories that have my full attention. I hope to be this person when I get home.
By Meghan H.