Columnist finds priceless lessons studying abroad

Stephanie Kapperman Columnist

Studying abroad has many benefits and I think that everyone should study abroad at least once during his or her college career.  College is the perfect time to study abroad; since you are not tied down to one place and you are young and energetic still. 

Studying abroad opens the doors up for so many opportunities, and allows you to do and see so many things.  By spending time abroad, you get to not only see the world but the experiences and memories you will create while abroad are priceless. 

I studied abroad in Cyprus, and while there I learned many things that are beneficial life skills and had priceless experiences.

You will make new friends and meet a lot of amazing people.  Those friendships you make may end up being some of the best.  Having those international connections throughout the world can be very beneficial.  You will always have those connections and friends for the next time you visit the country you studied in. 

While abroad, you will always be learning whether or not you are in the classroom.  Personally, from my experience abroad, some of the best times and most I have ever learned was by going out and interacting with the locals and just talking with people.  I learned more by experiencing another culture than I had by sitting in a classroom reading about another culture and country.  I really got to learn about the country and it helped me gain an appreciation for what America has to offer.

I also gained another perspective that I wouldn’t have had I passed up this amazing opportunity to study abroad.  I was fully immersed in the other culture, and learned so much about them and their way of life.  I truly believe the best way to learn about another culture is to live that way, which you can do while studying abroad.  You aren’t just visiting another country- you are actually living there – which is an unforgettable experience.

While studying abroad, I not only learned about other cultures, I also learned some things about myself. You will gain a sense of independency that you may not know you had, and you learn to do things on your own.  Your beliefs and values will be challenged and questioned at times during your experience, and you will strengthen them or even gain new perspectives on your beliefs and values.

Through your time abroad you will also be taking control of your future.   When it comes time to apply for jobs after school, having the experience of studying abroad looks great on resumes and will make you stand out when applying for jobs.  Your time abroad may have an influence on your future goals and even your career choice. 

People are worried they can’t leave home, and do not want to leave their friends, but your friends and family will always be here when you get back from your trip. 

Studying abroad has many benefits, and there are many programs and options out there to find the perfect fit for you.  Studying abroad is something I think everyone should do and an experience you will not regret.

Stephanie is a psychology major and can be reached at [email protected]