20150323_113448Upon Return

Thoughts/feelings – Now that you’re back home, what are some of the things going through your head? What did you think when you first arrived in the airport? What are some of the things you’re feeling? Do you miss your host country? Host family or friends from abroad?

I wish I was still abroad. I have been bitten buy the traveling bug. I came back in to the USA on a ship which was excited. At the airport in Birmingham I thanked God for bringing me back home safe. I miss all my friends from abroad, and we plan on meeting yearly in another country.

Changed Person – Study abroad has the potential to greatly influence and change people. How has your study abroad experience changed you? How do you feel different? How has studying abroad impacted your world view, your thoughts or your perspective? What changes have your family/friends noticed? How do these impact your daily life and personal outlook?

It has made me question where my ancestors come from. I have became very patient and flexible. My parents and friends have noticed how mature I have become.

Reverse Culture Shock – As we discussed in pre-departure, the four stages of cultural adjustment (“culture shock”) include the honeymoon stage, hostility stage, humor stage, and home stage. As you return home you probably have experienced reverse culture shock on some level. For example, you get back in the U.S. and it seems familiar (signs are in English, you’re used to the food, etc.). Take a minute to reflect on some of the things you’ve experienced relating to your adjustment back in your home country

I really have to adjust to everything being in English and everyone around me speaking English. I was exposed to about seven to eight languages so this will be difficult for me.

Advice for Future Students – What are the best pieces of advices you could give to future study abroad students? What do you wish you knew before you went? Are there any packing tips or travel tips you could share? Now is your time to help someone who will soon find themselves in your shoes prior to your journey!

I would tell students to do a lot of research of the countries they will be traveling to. Make sure you create a budget and stick to it. Over estimate everything. Make sure you have enough money to travel comfortable. Take half of whatever in your suite case out before you go, you will buy a lot of souvenirs.