Studying abroad is a big decision for many college students. I used to think I couldn’t study abroad because of the double major I was pursuing, however, I’ve recently decided studying abroad may be too hard to pass up now that I’ve made the decision to only major in one field of study. However, despite the excitement going abroad has given me, I can’t help but feel like I’ll miss things back home at Berkeley.
I have always been raised to think that going abroad is a crucial part of the college experience. My dad attributes his study abroad to being one of the best times in his life and my mom lives in constant regret that she didn’t take the opportunity to study internationally. These viewpoints have led me to believe that study abroad will be life-changing and a crucial time for self-exploration and growth. If I have the room in my schedule, shouldn’t I take up this opportunity? This is a question that plagues me while planning my own study abroad experience.
Ever since I was little, I knew I wanted to go to London. As a writer, London seems like the epitome of inspiration and history for creatives. Additionally, I spent much of my childhood living in Mexico and learning a different language. Typically, I do believe that studying abroad should be an opportunity to immerse yourself into a culture completely different from your own or help solidify a language of study, but for me, London has always been the dream — even if I won’t learn a completely new language.
Despite my excitement about pursuing my studies internationally, I think about the time I’m going to miss in Berkeley. Regardless of whether I go for a year or a semester, I know I’m going to miss my clubs, my roommates and my friends. It’s also hard to think about my friends who are current juniors who might be graduating by the time I get back. This is probably my biggest qualm about leaving — especially for a year — but I know I still have time to weigh the pros and cons of this decision.
Despite this one downfall, I do believe that the pros of studying abroad outweigh the cons. You’ve already been going to college and you know what to expect, however upon studying abroad, you’re entering a whole new realm that you’ve never encountered before. Yes, missing out will occur regardless, but in my opinion, studying abroad will provide so much opportunity to learn and grow. If any of you are contemplating whether or not studying abroad would be a good idea, just know that you aren’t alone.