You know that “first day of elementary school” feeling; you have a backpack filled with sharpened pencils and fresh notebooks and you can’t wait to get started on this new journey that is the second grade. You’re nervous, of course, because maybe your best friend is in the classroom down the hall and you don’t know how you’re gonna handle the separation. You’ve heard great things about the teacher, but what if she doesn’t like you? What if she isn’t fun or is too strict? What if we get homework on the FIRST DAY?
Ah, the anxiety of a second grader. Now lets swap out some words.
You know that “first day abroad” feeling; you have a suitcase filled with (what you hope is) culturally acceptable attire and whatever else you could fit and you can’t wait to get started on this new journey that is your semester abroad. You’re nervous, of course, because your family and friends are thousands of miles away you don’t know how you’re gonna handle the distance. You’ve heard incredible things about the program, but what if it doesn’t suit you? What if you fall behind or can’t cope in another language? What if there is more expected from you than you can handle?
As overwhelming as this is, I think we have been so prepared to handle a semester abroad. We know how much research to do on a country before visiting, we have the tools to succeed abroad, and we know who we can contact at any hour of the day if necessary. Because of this, I am fully confident my time abroad is something I can take on and utilize to its full potential.