The study abroad experience was unlike anything I have ever experienced before. It allows students to take classes at a different university than they are currently enrolled. . I have friends studying abroad all around the world ranging from Australia to Israel even a few in Buenos Aries. Since I had never been to Europe, it I was eager to find a place in Europe in which I could study. Originally when deciding where to study abroad, I was leaning towards Prague because my older cousin studied there two years ago and my second cousin currently lives there. After a little research and class approvals, my decision was officially through CEA to Barcelona.
Of course the first thing I did when I decided on Barcelona was to look at pictures on Facebook of girls who had studied there in previous years. It allowed me to go from person to person to see everything about their abroad experience. After viewing this I got excited to see monuments such as Park Guell and hopefully get a profile picture on the mosaic tiles like the ones I was viewing and definitely made me realize I needed to go shopping so I could look more like Barcelona locals. Also on Facebook, I was invited to a group called “take that trip” in which people who previously studied abroad give recommendations. This became a great tool that I used throughout my time abroad and made me extremely excited for all the upcoming things to do. While I did not hit all the spots in Barcelona because sadly I do not think I have time to go to Monchique, I think I saw a good amount of the city.
Before coming abroad I was nervous about traveling. Although it gets tiring some weekends, looking back every trip was worth it. Looking down at the city from the Duomo or celebrating in the streets of Ireland for St. Patricks day or or even taking a basic picture in front of the John Lennon wall made every early morning flight worth it. The Effile Tower was hands down one of the most breath taking sites I had ever seen. I cannot put into words seeing one of the most famous photographs or the colored houses in Copenhagen or visiting the Ann Frank house in which I had read so much about. Being able to taste fresh made Italian pasta in Italy or true Belgium chocolate is a great experience I will remember forever. From the smell of the fresh bread out of the oven to the oozing chocolate on a churro, every pound was definitely worth it. There are so many more places I wish I could go.
Collecting momentum has become a tradition for some students such as a pen or a post card in order to remember and cherish the amazing places they have visited. Since I love school supplies, I decided to collect pens everywhere I went. The only place I did not get one from was Tarragona. My favorite pen was from Paris in which it has the Effie tower in it and lights up different colors. I am excited to go home with all new pens from throughout the world. Some of my friends have collected post cards and my all time favorite is someone who collected a deck of cards everywhere they have gone.
While my friends and family back home claim they have been living viciously through me via social media accounts, there is nothing like seeing it in person. My snapchat is
constantly filled with my daily actives so that
the world can experience the great oppotunties I am. Social media is a revolutionary tool in which allows people to not only share their experiences, but help them remember it.
Timehop is one of my favorite applications because it reminds me of everything throughout the years. Recently I stumbled on a picture of my last day of freshman yearand was reminded of great memories. While I will be sad seeing pictures of the beautiful Barcelona, it will bring me joy remembering the great time I had.
My two favorite trips while abroad were Budapest and Croatia. These trips were documented mainly through social media. I am a little bias because I went to Budapest for my 21st birthday, so I posted not one, not two, but three instagrams while away that weekend. I had no idea that Buda and Pest weresplit into two separate cities and when I posted this information on my social media accounts, my friends and family they were shocked. The trip consisted of instagrams from the famous baths to snapchats of flowered shaped ice cream. Croatia on the other hand was dominated with snapchat with the temperature on it to show the beautiful weather and views I was experiencing.
Overall, study abroad is a great way for students to learn not only material taught in the classroom but all over the world. With the help of social media, I not only learned the best hidden places from past students, but also made my own memories. While abroad, I utilized 1SecondADay and I am sad that the time has almost come for it to end. This app allowed me to record one second of every day while abroad. While it was hard to choose what second while doing so much, it truely captions the amazing experience I had over these four months and I cannot wait to share it. I am extremely sad this chapter in my life has come to an end but could not be more fortunate for every second of it.