Christopher Wilner – London, England

There are a number of reasons why I chose to study abroad, the first and probably the most important is the fact that I have the travel bug! I have been all over the Continental United States as well as Mexico, Canada and various islands throughout the Caribbean. To go off of this, I commute from campus to school every single day so I have never had the experience of living on a college campus and all that it has to offer, by going out of the country to do this I will get the chance to meet a lot of new people as well as trying some new things that I might not be exposed to by living in the comfort of my own home. The final reason that I chose to study abroad is because it is something that I always wanted to do ever since going my orientation here at Quinnipiac.

Choosing to go to London was somewhat of a compromise, but the more research I did, the more excited I got about the place that I chose to go. Originally I was thinking that I wanted to go to Australia because it was the farthest away from home that I could get. It was also due to the fact that when I talked to people about going abroad the one recommendation that resonated with me was that I should go to Australia because I would never have the chance to go there again in my life. I looked at the schools and did a lot of research and found that although it would have been a cool place to go I don’t think it would have given me a lot of value added. I started looking into London after realizing that Australia wasn’t the right place for me. I had always wanted to go to school in a city and something about London just felt right. I looked at perspective schools and Queen Mary University of London and the University of Westminster were the two schools that I was considering. I liked the fact that Queen Mary was on one campus just like Quinnipiac and that was something that I was looking for so that is how I made my decision.

Through my understanding of the traditional rites of passage that I have right now, I think this will facilitate my growth throughout the semester as an individual. I think this understanding will allow me to understand the thinking that will go on in my head as I go through this journey. This is the first time that I am leaving the nest for an extended amount of time so I will have to do a lot of things on my own that I am not used to like cooking for myself and living with people that I don’t already know. Besides these basic facts, I will also be getting used to a culture and environment that I am not used to and through the rites of passage and my new understanding I believe that I will have an easier time understanding my own thought process and an easier time coping with the differences that I am about to encounter.

Studying abroad is all about discovering the person that you are with an open mind; this is a time where you are exploring who you are as a person in order to fit in with the world that you are about to become a functioning member of society. “When you’re traveling, you are what you are right there and then. People don’t have your past to hold against you. No yesterday’s on the road.” – William Least Heat Moon. People are so afraid of experiencing new things because they don’t know what is going to be set forth in front of them, but that is the exciting part about traveling. When you go to a new place no one knows who you are or where you came from so it is a chance to discover exactly who you are and that is what people are afraid of. I am ready to experience this new world because I have never been outside of North America, there is a whole world waiting to be discovered so I am not going to look back, there is too much excitement waiting for me in the present and future.

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