Floating by the First Day

Jasmine Kraemer Major: Interdisciplinary Health Services and Japanese Keio University, AY 18-19 As the pilot announced that we were making our descent into Narita airport, I glanced out the window to see Japan’s countryside. The distinct separations of properties and farms seemed a lot like home with the neat patches of greens and greenish yellow…

Keeping in Contact While Abroad

Adrianna Turner Major: English Non-WMU AIFS: Grenoble, France “But what about my phone?” Before departing for France, I scoured the internet for ways to keep in contact with my family. Every other blog I read told me the best course of action for a semester was to just get a French SIM card and you…

¿Qué pasa con el Peso?

Lauren LaLonde Major: Political Science and Spanish CIEE: Cuban Studies-University of Havana, Fall 2018. In Cuba, the cost of living can either be extremely cheap, or extremely expensive. But how can that be? Well folks, Cuba has two completely different currencies circulating throughout their economy. They have two different names (though most people refer to…

Soaking In My New Culture

Taylor Pace Major: Journalism University College Dublin, Fall 2018. The locals in Ireland are quite like the locals back home in the states. They eat eggs for breakfast, with some fruit, hash browns, cereal if they want, some brown bread, which that piece we do not have in America, but it is so good. They…

The Problem With the Study Abroad Mindset

Annika Ehrig Major: Spanish and Sales and Business Marketing CIMBA, Fall 2018. I’ve planned on studying abroad since I was a sophomore in high school. The concept has always excited me and given me an excuse to leave the common sights of my campus and see other countries, continents, and cultures. I’m so blessed and this…

The Time I Caught a Cold in Japan

Grace Gettig Major: Japanese & Global and International Studies Daito Bunka University, AY 2018-2019 Soooo….. about one month into my study in Japan, I caught a cold. Nothing severe. Headache, sore throat, runny nose. The usual. Now, this may not seem like a big deal, but it can be confusing as to how to care…

Differences between European and American Society

Nora Owens Major: Spanish and Occupational Therapy Non-WMU, AIFS: Granada, Spain Since arriving in Europe, I have noticed many differences between European society and American society. I have experienced a little bit of culture shock since getting to Spain. I have traveled to London, Madrid, Barcelona and Nerja, Spain in the month that I have…

Be Here Now

Kelsey Dovico Fulbright U.S. Student Program: Teaching Assistant Madrid, Spain, 2018-2019 Transitioning to life in a foreign country without wi-fi to cushion or distract my disorientation was challenging exercise in mindfulness. Without e-mail to check, Facebook to peruse, research to poke through, or indeed, the ability to post to this blog, I was completely available…

Some Thoughts Before Leaving to Study Abroad

Brock Notter Major: Finance and Economics Saint Louis University Madrid, Fall 2018 How did you decide the location of your study abroad?  What factors played a role  in your decision? The biggest determent of location was the ability to transfer 3000 and 4000 level courses back to Western to count toward a second major. Being a senior, I was very limited in my choices because I had already fulfilled…

Culture Shock in Japan

Amy Nguyen Major: Management Rikkyo University, AY 2018-2019 Despite being Asian, this was the first time that I have ever stepped foot in to an Asian Country. I did not know what to expect. The moment that I stepped out from the airport, my mind was completely blown. My first thought was there’s so many…

Home Sickness

Nick Talamantez Major: Film, Video and Media Studies Non-WMU: Sol Education, Granada, Spain, Fall 2018 As someone who rarely sees their family and doesn’t find himself too attached to anyone, I figured that I would probably not have any problem with studying abroad for a whole semester. WMU’s study abroad department warned us about the…

Public Transportation in Japan

Pamela Gudobba Major: Japanese and Global and International Studies Ritsumeikan University, Academic Year 2018-2019 Public transportation in Japan has been a wild ride for someone like me, who comes from a city where it is practically nonexistent. Here in Kyoto, there is an extensive bus and train system, a subway line, and Kyoto Station is…