My Two Years of Studying Abroad
The last two years of my life were crazy. I have come a long way in the past two years. My whole personality has changed in this time. People who haven’t met me in the last two years won’t recognize me. I don’t look, think, believe, act, do things the same. I am an international student at Purdue. I chose to study abroad to get out of my comfort zone, away from my family and do things my way. Doing things my ways I have messed up things more than I have got it right. Getting lost, losing money, being drunk and missing classes, missing flights. The list is endless but I love Thomas Edison’s quote “I have not failed. I've just found 10,000 ways that won't work.” I have learnt a lot more from than failures than my successes. The most important thing that I have learnt is don’t commit the same mistake. I am not afraid of failing anymore but am committed to improve on my previous mistakes. All I want is to be a better person the next day.
I have now finished 4 Technical Purdue study abroad programs, which they say studying outside United States. I have been to Colombia, Peru, New Zealand and Barcelona. All of them were different in many aspects the economy, language, culture., lifestyles of the countries. Also the type of my programs spring break, summer and semester. All the experiences were different and taught me different things. There were difference and difficulties every time but I think that there is only one way to get through the problems. Instead of resisting, we should work through the difference. We should be open to change. Now instead of ignoring the difference I try to appreciate and embrace them.
When on study abroad there is always a lot of things to do travel, party and of course ‘STUDY’. Balancing everything gets very tricky. And not actually being on a college campus makes you even more reluctant to pay attention on studies which has often lead to problems. I know that while abroad it’s important to learn about the country, culture, language but education is important too. I have learnt to make better choices now. I set my priorities first and finish what’s the most important first, then do things that I enjoy doing. I look forward to do the same at Purdue and also in my life. Even though all study abroad had different challenges there were same lessons that I learned over and over again. Every study has acted as a reinforcement of my prior learning. Every study abroad has been fantastic, there is no favorite one I loved all of them and recommend them to everyone.
It’s only two days left in Barcelona, very crazy how time flies I feel like I only came yesterday. The last 30 days felt like 30 min, I just started to get comfortable with the lifestyle here and have to leave now, I am very sad. I loved every bit of my stay here, there are so many things in Barcelona to do, couldn’t do it all but still did a lot. Beach days and clubs, things completely on different side of the spectrum scuba diving, going deep in the water and then hiking in Montserrat going high in the sky. I love Barcelona and would miss it a lot.
The most important thing that I learned in Barcelona was actually in the one of the class I took here. It is very surprising because when you think about study abroad, it’s always like go out and learn culture, language, lifestyle but actually you learn everywhere both inside and outside the classroom. Never underestimate classroom learning. Our professor Brian was talking about different cultures and how he was kind of interrogated at a German airport because he lost his passport and didn’t had any entry stamps on the new one. And when he came back to Spain they didn’t even look at his passport. Also talked about how Germans are very time punctual, and places like Spain and Italy spend hours eating and Greece where people don’t have any sense of time. I am an economics student and I drew a conclusion from it, the strict Germans have the strongest economy in Europe, Easy going Spanish and the Italian economies are struggling real bad and then there is nothing to say about Greece they don’t even have a functional economy. I have learnt that it’s not just about finishing something, it’s all about doing it the right way. Just finish things are good for the short term but what matters in the long term is doing it the right way. I will now always try do things the right way even though it might be more difficult than just getting it done.
I still can’t believe that I have to leave Barcelona in two days. I am sad that I won’t see my friends from Barcelona. We have been eating, studying, travelling, partying together for last 30 days and suddenly you don’t see them for the next two months. But I am also happy to go home and see my family, which I haven’t seen a lot in the past two years. I am definitely going to come back to Barcelona and also do more study abroad to achieve my goal of one study abroad a semester.