What to expect before you're expecting to study abroad
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What to expect before you're expecting to study abroad

Congrats, you're studying abroad soon! Here's what you can expect in the months before you go

What to expect before you're expecting to study abroad

Studying abroad is one of the most cherished college memories for a lot of people. I mean just think about it- you get to leave your old life for a bit and vacation in a trendy European city. What's not to love?

Don't get me wrong, study abroad is a great opportunity -take it if you can- however, there's a lot more work going into it than one might think. I'm studying abroad in Germany next fall; here's some things to expect before you go abroad:

There's a lot of paperwork that goes into getting into a program

The first step is choosing a program that fits for you: choosing one that gives you credit for your school, choosing an option you can afford, and choosing a program that offers courses you're interested in. Once you find your program there's a lot of paperwork to fill out (thank you bureaucratic systems!) First you have to apply to the program, including essays, letters of recommendations, and school official forms to fill out. Then when you get in there's all the legal documentation. So many papers! Take a deep breath, fill out those papers, and get excited for a new chapter in your life :-)

People will act like studying abroad is just one big vacation

While traveling is one of the many advantages to study abroad, it is not the only aspect of it. The most important part is, well, the education. It's important to keep in mind the reason you're going is to get a different education experience. Of course, weekend trips are an added bonus, but it's important to keep in mind that this is still school.

The closer you get to the day you have to leave, the more sentimental you'll get

As soon as I got that letter saying I've been accepted to the Germany program, I've been planning how I can make this summer the most amazing fun-and-friend-filled summer yet! I'll go camping with the girls this weekend, go visit the boo thang the next weekend, and hang with the fam next Tuesday! So far, I've been lucky to see all my friends once. I keep thinking, "come on people, I'll be gone for four months soon,, hang out with me now!" But you've got to keep in mind, for your loved ones it's just a regular summer. Sure they'll miss you when you're gone, but they often don't realize that until you are gone. The good news of you being extra sentimental is that even the small things will mean something big to you. Watching the fireworks with your best friends feels extra special when you know that soon you won't be seeing them for a while.

You might experience some MAJOR fomo

(That means Fear Of Missing Out, just fyi) When you know you're going to be gone for a while, it can cause some major anxiety about what you'll miss when you're gone. You might worry that your friends will forget about you and find a new group while you're gone. You might worry that your significant other won't wait for you to get back or won't be willing to do distance. These are valid fears, but if you think about it, in the grand scheme of things four months isn't that long. If your friends ditch you in that time, they probably weren't your friends to begin with. If your partner isn't willing to wait for you, how can you expect he would be willing to spend forever with you? Don't miss out on this opportunity because you're scared of what you'll miss out on- instead be excited for all of the new adventures you're going to embark on!

You'll get super excited about it and talk nonstop about going abroad

You've worked hard to get here! Take it all in, celebrate with friends, and cherish your family- you'll miss them more than you know. Pack those bags, get on that plane, and start your journey! Your old life will be back waiting for you when you get home. Spread those wings and fly :-)


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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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