There is nothing more beautiful than the experience of going somewhere new, a place where the culture is different from what you are used to, where language barrier is just one of the many things you have to face but the experience you get from being in another country and seeing life in a different lens is just priceless.
Studying abroad has taught me so many lessons in life and I am so grateful for the fact that both my undergrad and graduate school years I was able to study and experience countries: Singapore, Spain, Hong Kong and Thailand. Yes four countries to study in is a bit much and to be quite honest not a lot of people do but that just shows it is not that difficult to find the right program for you.No matter what country you decide or wish to go to, the experience is something that no one can take away from you and stays with you forever. Whether you go with friends or alone, you get to learn so much not only because of the education you are receiving but the overall experience. You start to see what are the things you tolerate and can’t, how you like to travel (because yes you travel when you are abroad to other countries!), what food you like and don’t (just try it, it won’t hurt!), listen to new music, even change your look and start dressing like the locals, etc. You even start learning a couple of new foreign words here in there or even an entire new language if you stay long enough.
Take the time to look into the programs though, not all study abroad options are the right ones for you. I know people from my Spain trip that left within the first three weeks from a 5 month program because they just couldn’t tolerate the differences in culture (among other reasons). Once you find the right program and country, don’t let the cost of the program discourage you. There are tons of grants and scholarships for Latinas like us who want to explore the world. Go to your study abroad office and ask them for details on what scholarships are available and start applying at the end of the day its free money and someone needs to take it so why not you my Latina Smart chica!
One thing is for sure; once you get to your destination you will not regret one second of it and trust me when I say it will change your life. Trust me though when I say that I know tons of people who didn’t study abroad while in school and regret it…why? Because they are now adults working the real world and having the time off to go live in another country is just too difficult to do. Don’t regret it and go for it, the world is on your fingertips and it is there for you to explore it!
Disclosure: I am currently a blogger ambassador for Latina Smart and was compensated for this post. However, all the opinions expressed here are my own.