If I could give anyone advice about college, I would tell them they MUST study abroad. It is something I always knew I wanted to do and it was such a great experience. Many students seem skeptical about studying abroad because it is intimidating to leave the country and they assume it is a long hard process to go through, so here are some easy steps to choosing the program that is right for you.
- GO TO THE STUDY ABROAD OFFICE!
The staff members at the study abroad office are more than eager to help you find a program that is right for you. I actually found out about my specific program in my Spanish class because the professor was leading the trip to Spain personally. However, there was so much more information that I needed to know.
2. DECIDING WHEN TO STUDY ABROAD
There are many options for when someone can study abroad including the week over spring break, winter intersession, summer intersession, and a full semester. To figure out which one was right for me, I spoke to my adviser. I am a double major (Public Relations and Spanish) and wanted to graduate in under four years, so I knew I would need to take summer classes. With the course schedule offered for my Public Relations degree, it made more sense for me to spend a summer taking Spanish classes, so I decided to study abroad in Summer 2010.
3. DECIDING WHERE TO STUDY
For me, the decision to go to Salamanca, Spain was an easy one. It was a faculty led program that included one month of classes (where I earned 9 credit hours) and then traveled the country for two weeks. There were 18 other K-State students that also went on the trip. This program was perfect for me because I wanted to travel to a Spanish-speaking country and the professor who led the trip was from there, so he was able to teach us things we never would have learned otherwise. I was skeptical about the amount of freedom I would have being apart of a faculty-led program, but it ended up being better than I could have ever expected. There was about one group activity per week that I was in school, but the rest of the time I was a typical student at the university. Having the professor there, however, was so helpful. He helped us find the right classes that would transfer back to K-State, he was available for any emergencies (a girl in my group had to go the emergency room), and he explained many aspects of the culture that I wouldn’t have understood otherwise.
All in all, going to the study abroad office is the best thing you can do to get your trip under way.