Minors: Textile and Apparel Merchandising & Spanish
Program: CIMBA, Paderno del Grappa, Italy
Travel is one of the greatest opportunities study abroad has to offer, and one of the top reasons I chose to take a semester in Italy. During my weekends, I have had the opportunities to travel to Bassano del Grappa, Crespano, Lisbon, Venice, Rome, Berlin, Amsterdam, and Paris thus far. What is so great is that each weekend traveling offers an entirely new experience.
Walking into a new place with a new culture every weekend is something so unique about study abroad. I have never been to the places I am visiting and am immediately tasked with getting around and fitting in successfully. At first I was extremely nervous to travel to these foreign places, however I have come to learn that even attempting to fully fit into a culture is noticed and appreciated by the locals. I am a Spanish minor, but have yet to go to Spain, so I have not been to a country where I speak the native language.
I do my best to pick up on common phrases because it shows locals that I am acknowledging the change in culture and not just expecting them to recognize the United States’s culture.
Now, I feel much more comfortable traveling. Getting to see all of these places I have dreamed about is absolutely amazing and I am willing to overcome any language or cultural barrier in order to experience those sites. I will likely only have this opportunity once, so it is of the utmost importance for me to take full advantage of it. I try to pack my weekends with the most activities possible in order to see as much as possible. I typically only have two days in each city, so I want to get the full experience each time, even if this involves sleeping for only a few hours at a time.
Although traveling is incredibly exhausting, both mentally and physically, I would not change it for the world. So, my advice for you is to pack up your backpack, book a flight, and just go! What you’ll experience is like none other.