Program and Location:
Spring, Stellenbosch University; Stellenbosch, South Africa
Communication and International Studies
Why did you choose to study abroad?
Studying abroad is a transformative experience I knew I wanted to have from the moment I entered college. I was so eager to study abroad because of the endless benefits it provides such as meeting new people, exploring a new culture, and being able to grow personally and professionally. These reasons, combined with my desire to travel, led me to spend a semester abroad.
What did you learn about yourself?
Having never left the United States prior to studying abroad, it was a big jump for me. However, I was able to adapt and overcome any obstacles I faced, so I learned that I am far more resilient and adaptable than I knew. While abroad, I also learned that I have a passion for traveling and thoroughly enjoyed learning about new cultures, places, and lifestyles, which actually inspired me to add an International Studies major.
What was one of your favorite parts of your program?
Studying abroad in South Africa was highly enjoyable and rewarding all around, but honestly, one of my favorite parts was the hiking. South Africa has such diverse landscapes and breathtaking views that allowed me to fall in love with the outdoors. And the beauty of South Africa was magnified as I explored it with the incredible friends I made while abroad.
What advice do you have to future study abroad students?
Enjoy it while you can, because I promise you will miss it when it’s gone.
How did your study abroad experience prepare you for your future career?
Studying abroad allowed me to develop a wide variety of skills that are applicable to my future career such as adaptability, independence, and communication. In addition to acquiring and developing these skills, study abroad will help to prepare me for a career in my field of choice, journalism, by giving me a more global mindset and increasing my cultural competency.
Would you do it again?
Yes. A thousand times over.
This post was originally published in Study Abroad.