Study Abroad Confessions

Study Abroad Confessions

Today, I’m going to share my study abroad story.  It is ever more important for students to gain an international perspective.

Marlon in Chile!
Marlon in Chile!

Studying abroad prepares students for real world scenarios beyond those of the domestic college experience. It also tests one’s ability to adapt to a different culture while challenging one’s capacity to succeed in a new educational environment. In many cases, the universities abroad operate on a level completely different than what you might have become accustomed to at home. This experience can give students who study abroad the extra edge that they need to stand out on a resume or in an interview. Additionally, studying abroad can expand one’s horizons and alter one’s perception on life in very positive ways.  Even if studying abroad is not something that you are required to do to complete your major, it is still something I think every college student should experience.

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Currently, I am finishing my last semester for my BA in International Business at San Diego State University. To fulfill my internship requirement, I am now quite lucky to be Linguistic Horizon’s first intern ever. I studied abroad in Viña del Mar, Chile for about four and a half months earlier in 2016. While that time-frame may seem like a lot for some, I was only just getting my feet wet. My studies there were very difficult; and, I was having a really hard time understanding lectures. Just as soon as I was starting to acquire a more advanced grasp of communication in Spanish, it was time to leave. There were quite a few other international students who were there for a year. At the time, I thought it would be too crazy to be in Chile for any longer than 5 months. Now, I know that these students had the right idea. I would study abroad again in South America in a heartbeat. Not only were the people in Chile amazing and heart-warming, the cities and the countryside were beautiful in ways that now feel as if they were part of a dream.

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I chose to study international business mainly because I wanted to travel and study abroad. As the time to leave for Chile came closer and closer, I started to feel apprehensive. I was very comfortable with how my life was going in San Diego. In fact, I had to sacrifice quite a lot in order to be able to fund my trip. I even had to move out of my apartment, which I cherished very much. So I ended up living back at my mom’s house as a college student getting ready for one of the biggest life changing events of his life. I must say that it was all totally worth it because I feel stronger and more confident now than I ever have before. Now that I am beginning to transition to a career in marketing, I can see how my study abroad experience has prepared me to tackle life head-on.  Chile in some ways was one of the most difficult experiences I went through in my life. Because of that, I feel that most objectives and tasks now are a breeze. If I could get through Chile, I can get through anything. Studying abroad is also tons of fun. I had a great time making new friends and seeing new places. It was an experience I will never forget, and I hope you get to have the opportunity to study abroad as well. Cheers!

– Marlon