I chose to study abroad because of the influence my other family members had on me after their experiences. Both my parents and most of my cousins have been abroad and I have only heard good things about it, and wanted to try something different and step out of my comfort zone by living in a different country for 4 months. I will be in Barcelona, Spain during the Fall ’16 semester and chose Spain because it is somewhere I’ve always wanted to go. Ive been taking Spanish since I was 9 years old and I’m confident in my ability to speak and understand the language, and also excited to learn more Spanish while I’m there.
The traditional Rites of Passage theory will affect my study abroad experience in many different ways. While abroad, I will be experiencing new and different things everyday; things I will have never been able to do if I stayed in America. To me, studying abroad is a rite of passage specifically because most of my family members have done it. I’ve never traveled out of the country before, so going abroad for 4 months is something I will never be able to do again. The opportunity to travel and study for that period of time will never be presented again.
A quote from the workshop that is particularly relevant is, “Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed in the things you didn’t do by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines, sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.” —Mark Twain. I chose this quote because I know if I were to pass this opportunity up, I would regret it for the rest of my life. Never again will I be able to experience the world in this way, and I am happy to know that I will look back on this experience and the fond memories I will make for a lifetime. I think this quote also speaks a lot about becoming a member of the global community and learning about other places/people. It will be interesting to study with people from all over the world and get a break from being at Quinnipiac, where most students are similar.