Though some people can’t (or think they can’t) study abroad, the truth is that most majors at CU-Boulder (including engineering) can study abroad, with hard work and careful planning. And the extra classes you take during the year (or summer) and diligent planning is worth it, if you ask me. I’ve always loved traveling and experiencing places, people and things that are interesting, beautiful and different than what I’m used to. Like many students, I am a visual learner. What better way to learn about the culture of Africa than to go there? There is no other learning that can teach you more than experience can.
That’s why I applied for Semester at Sea for the spring semester of my junior year. This is a popular time to go abroad, and this is my dream study abroad program. Although I am in the beginning stages of the acceptance and planning process myself, I can tell anyone considering study abroad during their college to JUST DO IT (*Shia LaBeouf voice-over*)!
You should start by brainstorming where you would like to go, and when would be the best time to go for you. Then you can visit https://studyabroad.colorado.edu/ to research classes offered in different locations for your major. You’ll find almost all the information you’ll need on this site! Every person must take Study Abroad 101.
Then there’s the actual application, which turned out to be an easy form and a short essay (really short—actually 500 words max) for Semester at Sea. Of course, if I get accepted, there will be many other forms that I will need to fill out. But all in all, an easy process that could lead to so many opportunities and experiences I can only imagine! Everyone I’ve talked to who has studied abroad has described it as the “best opportunity of their life”!
Look how much fun Alexa Brown is having on SAS Fall 2014! Or Reghan Gillman in Bolivia…
All in all, the benefits far outweigh any extra work, effort and finances you have to put in to make it happen during your college career. What is holding you back?? If you talk to an advisor (available every week day from 9-5 on the Study Abroad website), you may be surprised to find out that you can spend time learning real life lessons abroad, get CU credit and stay on track to graduate! Only you can decide if and when you study abroad. But if you’re reading this looking for a little extra inspiration—it will be the best decision of your college career. Get out there and see what the world has to offer, Buffs!