Zachary Boever is an ambassador who studied abroad in China.
Briefly describe a specific cultural experience you had on your trip that made a lasting impression.
Because China is so different from the West, there were many experiences that I will never forget. While in China I was able to do some teaching. I have never really done teaching in the US but the experience I had teaching in China was everlasting. The students were pretty young, 2nd and 3rd graders and the moment I walked in the class their eyes widened. The area didn't have foreigners there often so it was a real treat to have me there. We played games that helped them learn English and during the breaks between classes they would all surround me and try to talk to me and play with me.
Why did you choose the program in which you participated?
I really love traveling and there is just something about Asia that interests me so much. I have wanted to apply for the China program since before I even was accepted to Saint John's University. I have taken several years of Chinese and China was the place for me to go.
Describe your overall study abroad experience.
Going abroad in general is probably the greatest idea ever. You really learn more about yourself and your country. You are able to understand how others think more than you would back on campus. The experience was so life changing and memorable that I applied to study abroad again.
How has the trip affected you? How are you different for having completed the experience?
Going to China has taught me to go out of my comfort zone and try new things. I used to get nervous pretty easily but the experiences in China gave me the ability to go past my fears and try new things more than I ever have before.
What advice do you have for future Study Abroad Students?
While abroad, don't let opportunities pass up because my might regret it. There are so many things you can try and you may think you will be able to try it later but a lot of times you won't be able to. Try food that doesn't look tasty, try a mode of transportation that you don't get to back home, talk to people you normally wouldn't be able to back home. Do anything and everything but be safe. You will have no regrets if you do this