Studying abroad has many benefits, among them being personal development, cultural experiences, and becoming a traveling expert. One of my favorite parts of the JSB program is the chance to travel to different European cities on the weekends. But the opportunity to travel every weekend has also brought along the challenge of planning trips in foreign cities and then successfully navigating those cities.
Most people would have second thoughts about this, questioning how they would get there, where they should stay, and how they would communicate with the locals. After only 10 weeks of study abroad, I can honestly say that not one of these concern me and the stressful aspects of traveling no longer intimidate me. Instead, I see these matters simply as part of the adventure and I believe that adventure is the best way to learn.
Not only does weekend travel give me the chance to explore new cities, but it also allows me to experience cultures completely unique from the others. This is important for me as a young adult because now I am more prepared and eager to work with those from cultures completely different from mine.
I have learned more about history and culture in the last 10 weeks of classes and tours than I ever have in 21 years of textbooks and movies. It is truly amazing to learn about Rome’s 2000+ years of history in class one day and then go see it in person the next. Or to take a walking tour in Barcelona, and discover more about the city and Catalonians than I ever thought possible in just 2 hours.
I have found no greater joy in life than traveling and a new adventure, and that’s exactly what I get to do every day while abroad. So if ever the word “travel” comes into conversation, I say “bring it on”.