Study Abroad

Thinking About Studying Abroad? Read This First!

Traveling is a luxury. While everyone dreams of being worldly and spending their time trekking from one new country to the next, learning new cultures, and experiences new things, it isn’t always a reality. The reality is that traveling can be expensive and time consuming. As a post-grad adult you can spend years saving and planning for the perfect trip. The best way to beat the wait is to take advantage of the many study abroad opportunities and programs offered in college.

Check out these awesome study abroad locations and life-changing student experiences

Istanbul Turkey

“Istanbul is not a place that I ever thought I would visit. I was in a health tourism program so we spent our days checking out different Turkish baths, along with doing all the touristy things and visiting popular landmarks. I had a blast in Istanbul. The city and architecture was beautiful, the culture and people were so welcoming and friendly. The food was the only thing I wasn’t completely in love with. I made lasting memories and lifelong friends on my trip.” – Callie Pederson

Blue Mosque in Istanbul Turkey
Istanbul Whirling Dervishes
Queensland Australia

“Australia was the perfect environment to gain a cultural knowledge that no amount of traditional class learning could provide. The people were amazing, the landscape diverse and exciting and the lifestyle a serious change of pace.” – Clint Davis

snorkeling in Australia
skyline of the Gold Coast in Australia
Alicante Spain

“It was fun living in a dorm with students from all around the world. I got to know a lot about their cultures and differences in day to day lifestyle. The lifestyle in Spain was slower and more laid back than I was used to. Lots of meals (paella), siestas, family time and late nights. ” – Maddy Anderson

the streets of Alicante Spain
Alicante beach
Prague Czech Republic

“My experience in the Czech Republic was unlike any other. We were given the chance to explore the spa tourism culture, both in the capital of Prague but also in a small spa town called Mariánské Lázne. We were given the chance to experience all different types of massages – honey detox, chocolate, aromatherapy, while also learning about the cultural ties to balneology: water as a healing power. In the vibrant city of Prague, we were exposed to the popular Thai massages advertised all over the city, while also exploring the bustling night life and beautiful castle that guards the city.” – Hayley Musial

bridges in Prague
view of Prague
Isla Ometepe Nicaragua

“While living and studying abroad in a rural village in Nicaragua, I saw more and learned more about the culture than I could have imagined. My favorite part of being in Nicaragua was the warmth and vibrancy of everyone there. I stayed with a host family who generously included me in their everyday lives. They brought me along to the lake to catch fish, showed me how to sharpen a machete, and taught me how to grind corn and make tortillas over the wood stove. This experience inspired me to help reduce material poverty, increase environmental sustainability, and promote women’s empowerment.” – Ella Miller

Isla Omepete fishermen
Isla Ometepe
Xiamen China

“What struck me most about my time in Xiamen was how welcomed we were not just by the members of the university, but the locals as well. It’s easy to get indoctrinated in this “us against the world” mentality-especially towards a place as polarizing as China- but any reservations I may have had going into this program was immediately erased. Our cultures’ differences were points of exploration rather than segregation. They really set the standard of how we should view and treat people with different backgrounds than our own. It sounds cliché, but their mindset made an immense impact on me and the things I learned from them I carry with me to this day.” – Mike McGee

Xiamen Market
London England

“My time in London was full of experiencing new things, seeing new places & trying new adventures. London is a sophisticated cosmopolitan city with a thriving international population, economy, and culture. The city has so many amazing landmarks, historical sites, delicious restaurants & hip local hangouts. One of my favorite aspects of London is having the ability to quickly jump from city to city whether it be via Tube or Monorail/Train allowing you to see all areas near & far.” – Ella Vance

London skyline
London guard
Dunedin New Zealand

“I came to New Zealand for all of the outdoor opportunities, which were absolutely out of this world, but what really surprised me was the kindness and generosity of the people. New Zealanders are the nicest people in the world, but they also like to have a good time. Like, on multiple occasions complete strangers would take me in, feed me, and then pile drinks on me. It was fantastic.” – Blaine Hartman

 Tunnel Beach, Dunedin
Dunedin New Zealand
Siem Reap Cambodia

“Visiting Cambodia was an experience of a lifetime. The people were kind, generous and always smiling. I truly admire the people, having overcome a harsh history like they have takes enormous strength. Their temples and architecture were absolutely stunning. Cambodia is a piece of heaven on Earth.” – Jacki Betz

elephants in Cambodia
Siem Reap
Valencia Spain

“Valencia allowed me to experience the culture of Spain without the hustle and bustle of a Barcelona or Madrid. The ability to travel relying on public transportation is Head and heels over what we have here in the U.S. I still keep in touch with the friends I made and we are planning a reunion this summer.” – Nicholas Ortiz

Valencia culture
Valencia Spain
Stockholm Sweden

“Sweden was a very unique place to study abroad. Stockholm is a very modern city with beautiful classic architecture. Friendly people, excellent transportation, great food and wild nightlife.  Its high quality standard of living and availability of universal welfare programs provided an invaluable experience of cultural context in what is deemed as a model society of a social democratic system that no class or textbook ever could.” – Karl Humm

Stockholm Sweden
kayaking in Sweden
Montpellier France

“Traveling to Montpellier and living with a host family on my study abroad trip during my junior year of college was one of the best experiences of my life. I loved being totally immersed in a different language and culture. I learned so much about the French people and their way of life. But it also helped to shape who I am as a person.”  – Amanda English

Streets of Montpellier France
Comedie Montpellier
Science at Sea

“Science at sea allowed me to engage in new experiences forcing me to step outside my comfort zone. Therefore, I was able to learn a lot about myself and the many abilities I never knew I possessed. Also, you get to meet great people and gain lifelong friends.” – Nicole Davis

Science at Sea

About the Author

Callie Pederson

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Degree in Communication and Creative Writing. Outdoor enthusiast, animal lover, blogger.

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