Ryan Kropp is an Ambassador who studied abroad in Spain.
Major: Accounting & Finance
Minor: Hispanic Studies
Why did you choose to study abroad and how did you decide on this program?
I have never been able to leave the country, and this was the perfect opportunity. I also was aiming to complete my Hispanic studies minor, which was easiest to do on the Spain program.
Briefly describe a specific cultural experience you had on your trip that made a lasting impression.
The different lifestyle of the Spaniards, especially the eating schedules and late night leisure activities.
Describe your overall study abroad experience.
Studying abroad in Spain was the most amazing experience I have had, and the best decision I have made. I learned so much about how other people live, while learning so much about the Spanish culture and the language. My Spanish is noticeably more proficient and I made a many new friends within the group. Spain was fun, intellectually stimulating, and integral to my advancement in the Spanish language.
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?
One benefit is the ability to discover new things, while discovering yourself. I became more active and confident since my semester abroad. My academics improved during the trip, helping my GPA a lot. I feel this program helped me a lot professionally as I am now more culturally aware and also personally as I'm more open to new experiences and trying new things. This helped me break out of my comfort zone, which is something I desperately needed.
What advice can you offer for CSB/SJU students who are considering or planning to study abroad?
If you are just considering it, do it. You will regret it if you don't as you may never get an opportunity again. It is a scary thing to do, but you learn quickly that you are capable of so much more than you think.