Right now I’m a Sophomore in college, but just a few years ago I was a high school student begging my parents to let me study abroad. They were not at all on board with the idea of spending so much money just for high school, but with college their opinion changed. Last winter, I was struggling to decide whether or not I should study abroad. I really wanted to and the classes fit perfectly in my optimal schedule for graduating, but the cost was a little higher than I anticipated. I was talking to my mom about it and asked something along the lines of, “If you were me, would the cost be worth it?” My wise mother said something like, “To me it wouldn’t be worth it, but I’m not you. I have no desire to go. But we both know that as soon as the time for signing up passes, you’ll regret not going. So you might as well just go and you’ll figure out the money.” So it was decided, I signed up, and months later God provided me with a well-paying summer job. Much to my surprise, I’m going to Greece with extra spending money!
So what is so appealing about studying abroad?
- It’s a chance to experience a culture temporarily while finishing school at the same time. No matter what, my life is school right now. I can’t change that, but I can control what that looks like. Right now is a perfect time in my life to do crazy things, go places, and scratch things off my bucket list.
- I will learn more. Greece specifically is rich in history (which I love). How could I not learn while touring ruins, going to museums, and walking where Paul and Socrates did? And where better to study philosophy (one of the classes I’m taking) than Greece?
- I will be forced to be outside my comfort zone. I don’t know many people going on the trip. I am leaving my phone in America (hello Skype, Facebook, and email). I don’t know what to expect. I’m pretty confident I will grow as a person under those conditions.
- It’s a chance to see the world. I grew up longing to see the world. This is a perfect opportunity to see it. I’ll be visiting Istanbul, some Turkish islands, Rome, Athens and other parts of Greece.
So my flight leaves this evening. I hope when I come home I’ve grown, gained knowledge, took in the scenery, and tasted different cultures.