Studying abroad: it’s good for the soul, and even better for the resume. I’m an advocate, to say the least, for studying in another country, or in my case another city for a semester in college. I’m currently involved in the ‘Scripps in DC’ work-study through Ohio University. Not only is this something to add to the resume, it is an incredible way to get the experience of traveling to a new place with the perks of the university credit.
As to be expected, each person has different experiences as they embark on their global opportunity, therefore this blog is a collection of the things I learned from my semester in DC so far. Take a peek into the world of traveling with global opportunities.
Like any big move or transition in your life you’ll miss your friends and family left behind, at one point or another. But, the remarkable thing about joining a group of people similar in major and venturing on the same journey with you, is the bond that you make as a group. You’re able to relate more when you spend your days studying and living in a new city together. It’s rewarding to have friendships strike up along the way. While I miss those back home, I’ve found a group of people similar to myself and more than worth knowing.
When you’re studying abroad or domestic, the forms in which you learn are an entirely different animal. You have to be prepared for a setting that isn’t a traditional classroom. You’ll learn a wealth of knowledge, but in a very different way. Since I’m a journalism major, we took our fair share of time discussing and practicing the trade while visiting organizations to speak with us about a career in the field. It’s the perfect way for you to get a balance between class work and actually engaging in the field of communications. A large chunk of my trip is an internship with a company of my choosing. I’m currently interning with National Committee of Quality Assurance and through this trip I’m receiving hands on work in a communications department. While there are no textbooks, there’s value in the work you’ve learned within a semester.
Stepping foot into a new city is intimidating and learning how to navigate within the city is even more nerve wracking. But, there is a lot to be gained from adventuring around and getting acquainted with the nitty gritty of the city. The Metro is the popular form of transportation in DC as the traffic in any larger city can be a pain. Figuring out public transportation is the first test when arriving in DC. While transportation is important, I have to say that your destination is even more significant. Making sure that you spend your free time exploring what the city has to offer is the best use of your time. It also doesn’t hurt to become familiar with the place you’re settling into over the course of the semester. So, if you study elsewhere for a semester, take the time to enjoy your surroundings.
The perfect ending to this blog would be something inspirational. For instance, to quote ‘Oh, the Places You’ll Go,’ would be nearly perfect, but I don’t think I have a Dr. Seuss book handy. Instead I’ll just end on this note. Studying domestically or abroad can be intimidating, but I wouldn’t trade my experiences for anything. And I’m looking forward to what the rest of my time in Washington DC has to offer.