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Studying Abroad Widens Your World View

Tyler C. Butler/ The Charger Bulletin

Tyler C. Butler/ The Charger Bulletin

Rebecca Tatera, Staff Writer

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Exploring new cultures is a wonderful way to learn more about your values, yourself, and it teaches you to respect differences and appreciate new ways of life.Those lessons are more important than they ever have been.

I have explored 16 countries, gained a unique education that not all students have access to, and formed lifelong friendships with locals.

So, why is it that students are choosing not to go abroad? The number of students is rising, but it is nowhere near as high as it should be.

“Nationally, the number of U.S. students studying abroad for credit during the 2015-2016 academic year grew 3.8 percent from 313,415 students to 325,339 students,” according to NAFSA.org.

National Association of Foreign Student Advisers, with a goal of advancing international education.

Many of the issues being debated in our society stem from misunderstandings and preconceived notions about differences. According to InternationalStudent.com, when a student studies abroad they “have a better understanding and appreciation for the nation’s people and history.”

Our university is fortunate to have a satellite campus in Prato, Italy, which makes studying abroad easier for any University of New Haven student who wants to take the international plunge.

For students afraid of terrorism, scared of being alone in a foreign land, or afraid to speak a new language, I am now specifically talking to you: Do not let fear keep you from seeing the world. If you want to go, if even the smallest fraction of you wants to go, go.

You will regret not going for the rest of your life. If you choose to go to Prato, the food is fabulous, the locals are kind, and you are in the middle of Europe. You can go anywhere and see anything.

Studying abroad pushed me out of my comfort zone every day, and insured that every day I grew as a person. I can now semi-fluently speak Italian, live independently, and I have learned to trust my decision-making skills because if I can navigate my way through Europe, I can navigate anything.

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Studying Abroad Widens Your World View