story by Alex Flomo
Public Administration And Policy
I spontaneously decided that I wanted to study abroad in the fall semester of my senior year. I was working as a freshman seminar peer mentor/teaching assistant at my university, which was managed by the Director of Study Abroad. One day, I started talking to her about how I wish that I had taken advantage of the various study abroad programs earlier on in my undergrad year because it was too late. She informed me that if I still wanted to study abroad, we could make it happen. From there, it was all about finding the right country, program, and scholarships to fund my trip. As luck would have it, she gave me an ISA-ELAP booklet so that I could look for program and the first page that I opened up to was a film and media program in Mumbai, India. I knew from that moment that India was my destination. I had already been extremely interested in Indian culture; I had worked at an Indian Cuisine restaurant in the summer and was taking the Bollywood: Popular Hindi Cinema class offered at my university at the time as well.
Ever since I was little I have dreamed of going abroad, whether it was going to be on my own or through an institution. By the time I attended college, I made it my priority to do a study abroad program. I have passion to learn new languages and understand other cultures.
<div>I believe studying abroad provides opportunities that just aren't possible staying at home. The chance to learn from other cultures and apply classroom theory in real world situation is something i felt would enhance my undergraduate career.</div>
<div>Even before I graduated high school, I knew I wanted to study abroad. Languages have always been a very keen interest of mine, and I've studied several of them throughout my educational experience. Language and intercultural immersion are probably the biggest reasons for me to study abroad--the best way to really learn a language is to use it and be surrounded by it, and the best way to understand the hows and the whys of a language is to experience it together with the culture to which it is tied.</div><div><br></div><div>Diversity is also a reason for me to study abroad. As someone who grew up exposed to multiple cultures, diversity has always been very important to me. I've studied Chinese off and on throughout my childhood, because my parents felt it was important for me to be aware of my Asian heritage. When I started officially studying languages in middle school, however, I realized that what I wanted wasn't just to read and speak and write other languages besides English; I wanted to experience the culture as well and broaden my worldview outside of the United States.</div>
I wanted to do something legendary for my family. No one in my immediate family had been to Europe for an extended period of time before me. Thus, I wanted to provide the foundation for my family and my future family to achieve anything that their heart desires.
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