Hey, my name is Tristan, and I am a senior chemical engineering student at The University of Alabama. I will be leaving to Edinburgh, Scotland tomorrow for UA in Scotland: Unit Operations Lab. I chose to study abroad because I have never been across the Atlantic Ocean and thought this would be a great opportunity to finally do it while pursuing my degree simultaneously. Since I worked an internship last summer, I thought that this summer I could do something different. A lot of factors played into my decision to select this program like my personal schedule, affordability, and location. I decided to do this program because I needed to take the course to graduate and was interested in traveling somewhere new with my peers.

In preparation to go abroad, I have been researching Edinburgh, Scotland so that I have an idea of what to expect when I arrive. Last week, I took a five-day trip to northern Michigan to relax and unplug before the sensory overload of a new city and coursework. I have been exercising and reviewing different chemical engineering topics in the past few weeks as well. I am trying to pack just the basic essentials such as clothes and school supplies because I am trying to think more about the experiences I will be having rather than material objects. Today, I am going through my flight information, packing list, and study abroad schedule and information so that I am ready for the journey ahead.

I am very excited and nervous for study abroad. I have never traveled this far from home. I have so many thoughts going through my head, but I am just trying to take it one day at the time. I hope to get the most out of my trip academically and culturally. I do not want to waste any time abroad. I really hope this is one of the best months of my life. It is crazy to me to have those expectations and know that it starts tomorrow. I hope to gain clarity about myself and future. I hope to gain a prospective on how people on the other side of the world do things differently than me. I have been hearing about how study abroad is life changing for so many individuals, and I am ready for my life to be changed as well.

Waiting in the Toronto airport