4 Reasons Studying Abroad In Spain Is The Best Choice You Will Ever Make In College
Start writing a post
Student Life

4 Reasons Studying Abroad In Spain Is The Best Choice You Will Ever Make In College

Though it took me a while to decide to take the leap of faith, I'm so excited I'll be spending next semester studying abroad.

204
Barcelona, Spain

It was my seventh-grade writing development teacher who first exposed me to the phrase "study abroad."

Fresh out of college, she shared pictures of her study abroad experience in London, telling us how she walked along Abbey Road, helped hold her friend across the Prime Meridian, and ate an abundant amount of fish and chips. Even then, I knew I had the travel bug, and from that point on I was determined to cure it by studying abroad in college.

Flash forward 8 years, and here I am, a junior at Butler University just two months away from hopping on a flight to Barcelona, Spain. I couldn't be more ecstatic to start my journey as a world traveler, though for a short time earlier this year, I was highly conflicted about whether or not I should take the leap and apply for the IES Abroad program.

After all, as I'm sure most students can understand, it took me a while to become acquainted to college. When I moved away from home, I left all I knew — my family and friends, my established reputation, and my comfy bed — to start a new life as a university student. I finally found my place at school sophomore year, and it seemed crazy to my solid friend group, club involvement, and social activities behind for an entire semester. At the same time, studying abroad had always been my dream. How could I make this difficult decision?

After reading numerous articles online, seeking advice from previous study abroad students and my school's study abroad advisor, and writing many a pros-and-cons list, I became more confident than ever that I should study abroad. Cons like "missing my sorority formal" (I've already been to four of them) paled in comparison to an extensive list of pros that simply seeing down on paper caused my heart to leap in excitement at the journey ahead.

Here are four of the many reasons I confidently chose to spend a semester studying abroad.

1. I'll gain an understanding of another culture.

Barcelona, Spain

Barcelona, Spain

Image by Michal Jarmoluk from Pixabay

As a strategic communication and Spanish double major with an international business minor, my ideal post-graduate career will be one where I can travel. Though my classes teach me about the business environment in other countries, there's only so much I can learn about the world in a classroom setting. Studying abroad provides me the opportunity to immerse myself in another culture, learning about Spanish fashion, cuisine, sports, arts, architecture, and the day-to-day habits of Spanish citizens. I'm excited to gain real-world, firsthand experience with international publics.

2. I've never been to Europe before, and I may never get the opportunity again.

Venice, Italy

Venice, Italy

Image by Gerhard Gellinger from Pixabay

Up until now, I've used my passport three times: for a trip to the Bahamas, on a visit to Mexico, and on a cruise through the Caribbean. While these trips count as international travel, I've barely strayed away from North America. My little girl dreams of eating a croissant in Paris, visiting the Cavern Club in Liverpool, and floating along the Venice canals in a gondola have always been just that: dreams.

Now, I have the ability to live those dreams at a comparable price to a semester at college. I can earn credits toward graduation, meaning I'll stay on track to graduate on time with ease. Never again will I be able to spend such a significant amount of time away from home with such a low opportunity cost.

3. My foreign language skills will greatly improve.

Barcelona, Spain

Barcelona, Spain

Image by Kristina Spisakova from Pixabay

In high school, I had friends, classmates, and coworkers who gracefully helped me improve my Spanish conversation skills. These conversations sparked my passion for the language, so I declared Spanish as a minor when I entered college and eventually bumped it up to a secondary major.

Still, like I mentioned previously, there's only so much I can learn in an American classroom about another language and culture. As part of my IES Abroad program, I'll be in an intensive Spanish course where I will spend seven hours per week improving my Spanish skills. Additionally, I'll have opportunities each day to speak Spanish to locals. At the same time, the majority of Barcelona residents speak English, so I can switch back to English and confidently and comfortably ask for help if absolutely needed.

I will feel so much more secure using my Spanish secondary major in a future career after I've cultivated these skills in Spain.

4. Studying abroad provides the perfect opportunity for self-discovery.

Woman laying down on grass studying abroad

Woman studying abroad

Photo by Liam Anderson from Pexels

Since entering college, I realized I am someone who values physical space to have headspace. Next year, I'll be a college senior, and it'll be time to pursue a career, find a place of permanent residence, and begin the rest of my life. Here at school, my judgement is clouded by my day-to-day tasks and frustrations, so I haven't been able to truly sit down and evaluate what I want in life. Leaving these to-dos behind will allow me to learn more about myself and the world, and I am confident I will have a better idea of what I want my future to hold as a result.

Though I'll miss my family and friends while I'm gone, I know they'll be a FaceTime call away and ready to welcome me home with open arms when I return. Each day, the reasons listed above make me even more excited to embark on this adventure, and I can't wait to see what surprises Spain has in store for me that I have yet to anticipate.

Report this Content
Featured

How I Celebrate Valentine's Day

Every person, every couple celebrates Valentines in different ways, but there are a few things to keep in mind.

2305
How I Celebrate Valentine's Day
https://stokpic.com/project/love-heart-art-on-urban-street/

Ah, Valentines Day, a day of excitement for some and heart break for many. There are three kinds of people on Valentine's Day: the ones who make it a big deal, a little deal, and those who are single, but Valentine's Day can be fun for anyone if you have the right spirit in mind.

Keep Reading... Show less
Warner Bros. Television

1. You don't have to feel guilty about flirting with customers for tips (or just for shits and giggles).

2. You can be obnoxiously flirtatious with anyone you want. You are free to be that girl that flirts with everybody and makes 'em all smile (it's especially fun when the guy is as cute as Collin Jost). No shame.

3. Making random men nervous with your superior beauty and intense eye contact just for the hell of it is really amusing and empowering.

4. No one gives two poops if ya legs are hairy (your man shouldn't either but *Kermit the Frog meme* That's none of my business)

Keep Reading... Show less
Featured

Black History Month? Try Black History Year

What does Black History Month mean to you?

2336
madamenoire

African Americans have done so much and will forever be remembered for their accomplishments. In my opinion, there is no such thing as Black History Month. All year, we should celebrate the amazing poetry, music, inventions, and accomplishments that has surfaced over the last 100 years. Let's take a look...

Keep Reading... Show less
Featured

A TikTok Ban? Nope, That's Not Happening

We've seen this movie before with the popular social media app.

5098
tiktok

Here we go again. There's a groundswell of support to ban TikTok in the United States.

Keep Reading... Show less
Content Inspiration

Top 3 Response Articles of This Week

Check out what's trending on Odyssey!

5050
writing on a page with a hand holding a pen as if the person is beginning to write something
c1.staticflickr.com

Looking for some inspiration to kick off your Monday? Check out these articles by our talented team of response writers! From poetry to tips for manifesting your dream life, there's something for everyone.

Keep Reading... Show less

Subscribe to Our Newsletter

Facebook Comments