Jack Colleran

Jack is an Ambassador who studied abroad in Spain

Major: Biology

Minor: Psychology, Hispanic Studies

Student Athletics: Cross Country Track

 

Why did you choose to study abroad and how did you decide on this program?

I chose to study abroad in order to expand my worldview and translate what I have learned in class to experience. I chose to study in Spain because I am a Spanish minor and I wanted a full immersion experience to aid me in my fluency.

Briefly describe a specific cultural experience you had on your trip that made a lasting impression.

Visiting the city of Granada had a lasting impression on me. I had a very wrong idea of what "European" Spain would always look like, but then I discovered that Granda is heavily influenced by African and Islamic cultures. I came to understand and appreciate the role of many cultures in one place and and how they can coincide to create a new, rich, and diverse culture.

Describe your overall study abroad experience.

My overall experience exceeded my expectations. I flourished not just as a student, but as a person. Studying abroad is a vehicle that allows such growth. My classes, excursions, and host family were the necessary ingredients to cultivate my new sense of global-mindedness.

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?

Studying abroad is the best way to achieve experiential learning. While abroad, you are not on a trip; you are a resident of the country you visit. Being a resident of a different country allows you to see academics, the world, and yourself in a new light. The numerous benefits of spending time abroad include fostering a new worldview, developing foreign language skills (depending on the program), and gaining independence and self-identity. Studying abroad has allowed me to become fluent in Spanish, which will help me greatly when applying for graduate school and a future career.

What advice can you offer for CSB/SJU students who are considering or planning to study abroad?

Foster your curiosity for studying abroad! Attend CGE classes and meetings, google photos of different countries, or talk to study abroad ambassadors! The more you explore, the clearer your study abroad calling will be. Also, plan ahead! Look at your four-year plan, make a list of study abroad goals, and follow your heart!