Katie is an Ambassador who studied abroad in Spain
Why did you choose to study abroad and how did you decide on this program?
I knew I always wanted to study abroad and when I decided to double major in Spanish and business, I knew I wanted to go to a Spanish speaking country. I ultimately landed on Spain due to the opportunity to travel to other cities within Spain on a weekely basis as well as the ability to travel to other European countries easily.
Briefly describe a specific cultural experience you had on your trip that made a lasting impression.
One experience I will never forget was when I ran the half marathon in Segovia with one other girl in our group. It was filled with Spainards from all over the country and just an overall incredible experience that I will never forget.
Describe your overall study abroad experience.
I had the time of my life in Segovia. I learned so much about the culture, language, and family traditions and could not have learned what I did without living with a host family. Today, I still keep in contact with my host family through Facebook. I fell in love with the country and will always cherish the memories I created on my abroad trip.
Based on your experiences abroad, what are some of the benefits of spending a semester abroad? How has studying abroad contributed to your personal, academic, and professional development?
Spending a semester abroad was the best way for me to fully learn the language inside and out. Without being able to fully live and breath the culture, it is not nearly as impactful. Also, living abroad really broadens your cultural awareness. My personal development grew substantially as I became much more appreciative for my life back at home as well as my family abroad. Cherishing the cultural differences and accepting them, rather than rejecting them is what really shaped my character.
What advice can you offer for CSB|SJU students who are considering or planning to study abroad?
My biggest piece of advice would be to go into it with an open mind. Don't be afraid to take risks and be out of your comfort zone because that is when you learn and grow the most. Travel, meet locals, and don't be too worried about money because you may not ever have to chance to do it again.
Do you have questions about studying abroad in Spain? Email Katie at email@example.com