Margaret Roesler is an Ambassador who studied abroad in Greece and Italy.
Why did you choose to study abroad and how did you decide on this program?
I had never been out of the country before, and I really wanted to push myself. The double language component was a big factor in my decision. Learning 2 new languages seemed like something I would love, and it turned out to be true!
Briefly describe a specific cultural experience you had on your trip that made a lasting impression.
Learning Greek was very difficult, but my goal was to be able to do one simple everyday task using only Greek. I was in a small shop down the road from my apartment, and I needed bread and milk. The bread was behind the counter, and using my simple grasp of the language I was able to order one loaf and a carton of milk! It was such a small thing, but the lady working at the shop could tell it was a big accomplishment... she gave me a free pasty and said καλό! (Good!)
Describe your overall study abroad experience.
Going on the Greco-Roman program allowed me to experience to interwoven cultures that have had a really big impact on Western culture. Greek people are welcoming and it was amazing to watch a modern society grow around a famous ancient one (in Rome as well!)
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?
The experience as a whole gave me a new outlook on everyday life and routines. Our whole group had to learn how to survive in two new cultures, plus get to know each other. It is a testament to how awesome studying abroad is that we bonded instantly. There was a really reliable group set up, so we were free to take the risks we needed to in order to immerse ourselves in Greek and Italian culture!
What advice can you offer for CSB/SJU students who are considering or planning to study abroad?
Really think about what kind of environment you want to spend time in. Go outside what you know at home! Remember that it's more than academics and the other people going along with you- the cultural atmosphere is what is really going to change your life!
Do you have any questions about studying abroad in GR/RG or want to gain access to my blog? Contact Margaret at email@example.com