I Have A Newfound Respect For My Newfound Home Studying Abroad
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I Have A Newfound Respect For International Students After Spending Time Studying Abroad

Missing what is comfortable—food, family, clothing, food (this one is huge for me)—is, of course, one of the biggest issues, but it is more than that.

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I Have A Newfound Respect For International Students After Spending Time Studying Abroad

Dear International Students,

First off, I want to apologize. I have always been under the impression that life was maybe a little easier for you. I have been judgmental about how students from other countries never seem to venture from their secure clique. I just figured college was the same transition for every student. I could have not been more incorrect.

I have walked in your shoes for the past month and it is not easy in the slightest. My timeline in a different country is also a mere fraction of those spending four years at a university away from home. I have a secure date when I return home that I hold onto when I feel lost. Those who leave their homes knowing they may not be able to come home during the year or even the summers deserve more credit.

Not to mention, once they get to their new home they may not know anyone. Move in day was hard and I had both my parents drive me to school and organize my new space. I did not have to fly or go by myself or worry about how I could transport my entire life in a suitcase that is less than fifty pounds.

Culture shock is real and no amount of research about a home country prepares you for the transition. Missing what is comfortable—food, family, clothing, food (this one is huge for me)—is, of course, one of the biggest issues, but it is more than that.

As a student, you are somewhat isolated from others because of some of the classes you have to take. You may have to take classes with other international students. This also influences how you meet people. Making friends is also another part that I have overlooked. As I write this, I cannot imagine not having any American friends. It is possible to get by, but the comfort that stems from knowing others are sharing similar experiences should not be overlooked.

I have such great respect for those who decide to take the massive leap into studying in a different country.

Rooting for your success,

A semi culture-shocked, semi-assimilated abroad student

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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