10 Reasons To Study Abroad This Summer

10 Reasons To Study Abroad This Summer

The main reasons to study abroad in the summer!

This past summer of 2017 I had the pleasure of going to Italy on a study abroad program through Stonehill College. The program focused on sustainability, art, food and environmental science. We lived on this off-road farm where we harvested potatoes, created our own art supplies, such as paper, and got to venture into Siena, Italy. The program lasted a quick three weeks- however, I stayed an extra week with my friend so we could visit Rome, Florence, Positano, and Pisa! So, basically, if you have seen the Lizzie McGuire movie when she goes to Italy, that was me minus the hot pop singer.

There were seven Stonehill students that accompanied me on my grand adventure across the globe! They are some of the best people I have ever met and I am so grateful to have met them! However, not only did our course cover science, and art, it also fulfilled my Learning Community requirement and Moral Inquiry! So here are some reasons why you should study abroad in the summer!

1. You get to fulfill credits while in a foreign country

While going to college to pursue your dreams is fun, it requires putting in the hours. Over the course of four years at college, you have to obtain a certain number of credits. However, if you plan to double major, or minor it can be difficult to find room for studying abroad and fulfill your credits. But, by studying abroad in the summer you kill two birds with one stone; fulfilling credits and visiting a foreign country!

2. You don't miss out on fun with friends at school! NO F.O.M.O HERE!

While studying abroad during a semester is fun, you can't help but wonder what's going on back home. By studying during the summer, you aren't missing Stonehill Bingo nights, Saturday night vent sessions with friends, or Fresh Check Day- because who wants to miss tiny, cute animals?

3. You get to brag!

All your friends are at work at home while you're in a foreign country! Who wouldn't brag about that? Also, depending on the program, you can study abroad for a few weeks and still have time to come home to work! So, you can make money and study abroad, its a win-win!

4. You have more time to take classes because you took school during the summer!

Do you plan on minoring? How about double-majoring? Same. However, it can be difficult to study all the subjects one wants and study abroad. By studying abroad in the summer your have more opportunities to minor or double-major increasing your skill set and building your resume!

5. You get to meet people you may not meet in class or on campus!

When you study abroad in the summer, you are with the group of people the entire time. Therefore, you are able to develop deep and lifelong friendships and relationships in a foreign country! How cool would it be to say you met your best friend in Africa?

6. It's a nice change of scenery after a year of working hard at school!

After a long year of hitting the books, it's refreshing to have a different view that the library. For example, the beautiful rolling hills of the Tuscany landscape. Studying abroad in the summer is like a gift you give yourself after a long year of work.

7.You don't need to worry about getting lost in a foreign country

When studying abroad in the summer, you are typically with your professors the majority of the time, at least that was the case on my trip! That way you never have to worry about getting lost or communicating! With adults around you get to be a kid more and truly enjoy your experience.

8. You get to eat lots of yummy food after eating school food for a year!

While I am so thankful for our amazing dining staff at the Commons, it is no gourmet Italian food. After a long year of eating school cafeteria food, you are gifted with delicious foreign food like yummy pasta and pizza. Trust me on this, once you eat Italian pizza, you will never go back. Ever.

9. Everything that happens during study abroad stays in the study abroad

Most of you have heard the saying, "Whatever happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas." Well the same applies when you're abroad. I would say more about my experiences but then I would be breaking the golden rule. Have fun and let your hair down!

10. In most foreign countries, you're of age! Welcome that glass of wine with dinner!

You are of age! Yes, in most foreign countries you are allowed to drink a delicious glass of wine with dinner or a fruity Bitter Shandy at the bar with friends.

If you have any questions about my trip through Stonehill feel free to contact me! The course was called Mindful Palette: Food, Art and Sustainability!

Cover Image Credit: personal

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To The Girl Who Hasn't Been Herself Lately

Your spark return, and you will shine like you were meant to.

Life gets tough. Life gets too much to handle sometimes, and those times make you stronger. However, right now, it seems like you have lost yourself.

It’s difficult when you catch yourself not being you. When you do something or act a certain way and just wonder, “what did I do to deserve this? Why is this happening? When will it get better?” The way you’re feeling is not so much that you’re unhappy, you just feel weird.

Your day will come. I promise you. This is just a phase.

The day you realize how much you have grown from this point in time will be your reward. It is so hard to see now, and I feel your pain.

Your light will return to you. Your pure bliss moments, they are seeking you. Your laughter where your tummy aches is in your reach.

Our moods change far too often for us as humans to understand why, but the encounters you make every day have this effect on us.

You must remember the pure happiness you experienced before your first heartbreak, before the first friend became someone you thought they weren’t, before you lost your innocence. That was a time of true joy as you had not a care in the world for the things that would harm you. Better yet, you didn’t have the option to experience them because you were just a child.

The world can be an ugly place, and your attitude towards life can change every day. One thing is for certain: you did not lose who you are internally. We all put on a face for the world. For the people who we try to impress. For the life we want to live. For the things we want to achieve.

Your definitive personality is still in the works. Believe it or not, it always will be. Times like this change us for the better even though we can’t see it.

Your happiness will return. You will be a better, stronger version of you. In fact, you will be the best version of you yet.

Once this phase is over, you will be okay. This I promise you.

Cover Image Credit: Megan Sutton

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Day Four In Italy: Florence

This is the day we learned the history of everything


Waking up bright and early we first took the tour bus to the country side of Florence where we visited a medieval town full of shops that lined a beautiful countryside.

CountrysideBrooke Burney

We spent about three hours here just looking around, buying things, and taking pictures. Once the three hours were up, we went to a winery where they explained how they made wine with the grapes in their vineyard.

In the vineyardBrooke Burney

After the tour, they fed us lunch with some of their wine. Then, after we ate, we passed through their wine shop and took the bus back to the Piazza della Signoria. On the way back, our tour guide was telling us about Michelangelo and his time creating the Statue of David. We had to stand in a line for about thirty minutes but when our time came, we were thrilled. We entered and saw artwork from many different artists. However, Michelangelo had a hallway of his own that was mostly filled with unfinished sculptures of statues with David being at the very end.

Statue of DavidBrooke Burney

After the tour of the art museum, our tour guide took us to the square where the churches were and gave us a history lesson on them. He gave us a background on the pictures that were painted on the doors and what they represent.

Brooke Burney

After this tour, we went back to our hotel where we were able to go eat dinner. My friends and I went back to the small square we first went to and ate in a small pizza joint.

Italian pizzaBrooke Burney

If you ever go to Europe, keep in mind that they have a hard time splitting orders. As we were sitting at this table, we asked for separate checks but they made us pay separately on a single check, which was kind of funny watching three American girls pick through their euros.

After dinner, we went back to our hotel to pack for the next day. To the train station, then Pompeii!

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