I have been home for a little over a week now from my study abroad trip to Edinburgh, Scotland. I have been pretty lazy since returning because I did not spend even one day relaxing in Scotland. I am sad that study abroad is over, but also appreciative that I even had the opportunity to do it. When I first returned back to Michigan, I was relieved that I could finally relax. Now, I just miss being in Scotland with my classmates everyday. I definitely do not miss the lab reports though.
My study abroad experience changed me in a lot of ways. I feel like I now have more of a global perspective of how things work. I felt like I was living in an American bubble, but now I am a lot more aware that the world is huge; people are living everywhere. I also feel more adventurous and open to new experiences. Study abroad really took me out of my shell and made me adjust to a new culture with a completely new group of people for a month. I think the trip has made me more wise, and I have been reflecting on my time in Scotland a lot since I left.
I experienced reverse culture shock upon returning to America. I spent a lot of time adjusting to my new schedule, country, and people I was with on study abroad. It was weird that it ended abruptly and I am back to my old life. I have had to adjust to everything being spread apart and not being able to get places by public transportation since returning. I just miss the excitement of waking up everyday in Scotland and doing something new.
My best piece of advice to future study abroad students is to make every day count. It is important not to waste any days because it doesn’t last forever. Also, make friends with your classmates and talk to your professors as soon as possible. They are likely going to be the ones you spend most of your time with on study abroad. I wish I knew how expensive everything was going to be before I left, so make sure you start saving money and know how to budget. Make sure to pack clothes for different types of weather too. Lastly, be adaptable and know that study abroad is going to be different than your expectations going into it. I am so glad I did study abroad, and it definitely changed my life for the better.