When I was preparing for my trip, I wish I had a list of things that would have helped me prepare better. Good thing is, I’m not going to let you struggle with the same thing!

  1. First and most important piece of advice: keep an open mind. Even if there is something you want to do that you don’t have the opportunity to see, if you go with the flow, you may find yourself in a once in a lifetime opportunity to see something extraordinary.
  2. Put yourself out there. Whether it be in class asking a question or forming a relationship with your peers, what you put into this opportunity will be what you get out of it. Class is very fast paced, so if you don’t understand, make sure to ask questions and assert yourself. If you have the opportunity to do something with your group as a whole or go with a small group on an excursion, take it! You won’t regret it, and it will make you so much closer with your professors as well as your peers.
  3. Become acquaintances with change. As someone who has always hated and struggled with change, you are putting yourself in a situation where everything around you is changing constantly and rapidly. One of the hardest hurdles for me to overcome in my life has been realizing that most change is good although it is almost always terrifying. If you lean into it instead of fighting it, you will find yourself in the middle of situations and relationships that are oh so rewarding.  

Although it’s not foolproof, if you are mentally aware of these things, it will make your trip 100x easier. Good luck!