Whole new world: Student perspectives broadened by foreign travel

Megan Krenek

Some people dream of traveling the world, while others are content with staying where they are. As a person who has traveled to a different country, I can say I am one who dreams to continue traveling the world. The feeling of not being stuck in one place while seeing new customs, traditions, and cultures makes it worth spending money on a plane ticket. I would love the opportunity to study abroad and think any student who has the chance to should take advantage of it.

I’m not a big supporter of school, but the idea of traveling to Spain, Europe, or even Japan to learn makes me want to crack open a textbook. Students learn about these places in books, but living and seeing them would provide an entirely new level of education and perspective. Think of the people they can meet and the language they will be exposed to. I wouldn’t get tired of being somewhere other than the United States, and things would always stay new and fresh.

While studying abroad is something I think everyone should experience, there are some people who won’t appreciate going to a different country or won’t appreciate it; those people who don’t go to class or don’t care about their grades. There is no point in sending someone on a once-in-a-lifetime experience only to slack off when someone who earned it and wants to be there could have gone.

If I got the opportunity to study abroad, I would look for unique places that wouldn’t be swamped with tourists. Places like coffee shops, libraries, or somewhere quiet would be ideal, and I would spend most of my time there. Then I would see the parts that usually wouldn’t if I spent most of the time in the popular places. Toward the end of my trip, I would go visit the tourist spots. There’s something about seeing the true parts of a country instead of seeing the parts everyone already knows and hears about that makes the trip that much more memorable. They’ll always have time to travel there again and see those tourist parts if that’s what they even want to do. Of course when they’re in a different country studying abroad, they’ll have a specific curriculum and specific activities to do, but in between those activities, there’s little nooks and crannies of the world that aren’t in the news or magazines.

Studying abroad can change the way people see the world. They get more exercise and appreciate the things surrounding them more. When they come back, they have a new mindset of how things are and they pay attention more to the little things.

Studying abroad can be one of the best things in a person’s life.