Now that I have finished my semester abroad in Cusco, I look back on the pre-nervousness and laugh. Traveling alone, to another country seemed quite terrifying, and I didn’t know If I was capable of it. But, studying abroad proved to be one of the most exhilarating, life-changing, and memorable experiences of my life. Within the four months in Peru, I learned more Spanish, Peruvian culture, but also about myself. I’m going to tell you some important lessons I’ve learned along the way. First, being adventuring solo. I’ve learned in life it’s incredibly important not to rely on friends for entertainment but to experience everything with yourself. In each of our journies in life, at some point, we’ll be without our normalcy. Another piece of advice I would offer is about time. Something that I feel like I never have enough of. One night as I was walking home from the University I reflected on how I always seem to walk a little faster through life. And, for those of you who know me well know how impatient I truly am. Living in Peru taught me that I need to take things a little slower, and enjoy the time I have. I’m constantly looking for the newest place I’m going to travel, instead of enjoying where I am. I want students to be ready for this adventure. Experience everything to the fullest, (while being responsible). And take it all in. In all honesty, there are going to be absolutely amazing days that you’ll never want to leave, but there are also going to be hard days. You’ll want to cry to your friends or family back home but it’s part of the journey. My journey is beauty in all its craziness. And I’m so thankful for an amazing host family, for loving me as if I was their own. I’m thankful for my parents in America who let me travel the world and follow my heart. I’m thankful for opportunities that my University provides me. Studying abroad is a beautiful, crazy, weird adventure. I wouldn’t change my time abroad for anything. Everyone who studies abroad I believe comes back a little differently. Everyone is going to have a different story to tell about their time abroad. Studying abroad allows so much room for personal growth, places and people you’ll never forget. I encourage my fellow students to study abroad, grab your passport and vamos. I leave you with one of my personal favorite quotes, “This heart of mine was made to travel this world” -unknown.
Last modified: May 9, 2016