I am studying at the FBISD Global Studies Academy because of my passion towards languages, history and global issues. I have always dreamed of traveling abroad to explore other countries. I can watch a documentary about the amazon, or see pictures of Sahara, or read blogs about the streets of Old Delhi, however, visiting in person, is a wholesome experience. My first study abroad opportunity will be an adventure that offers a unique opportunity for me to grow academically and personally. Developing Language Skills: Studying abroad is really the best way to learn a language since I will be forced to practice and hone my language skills every day. Being surrounded by native speakers offers the chance to immerse myself in the language, which will enhance fluency and retention.
Also, by travelling to a country in which the primary language is one I have studied in school, I can enrich my vocabulary with words and phrases that may not be taught in school. Traveling Builds Confidence: Overcoming obstacles like adjusting to living with a host family or in a dorm, or figuring out how to use public transit in a foreign country, or asking for simple things in a store, or using foreign currency, or even eating a new cuisine, I will build self-confidence and ability to adapt in unfamiliar surroundings.
With time and experience, I hope to see those obstacles as less obstructive and more like challenges that I can overcome. Getting Out of Routine: Although I have moved between states and schools, I have always enjoyed the comforts and safety of home. I have established a comfort zone with family, friends, school, and in the community. The idea of leaving it can be scary and daunting. In my daily routines, I know how to act and respond to people and my surroundings.
Being in a new place, with different people, who hold different values takes all that familiarity away. I will learn the most about my capabilities in unfamiliar situations. Once I find out ways to communicate and connect with people despite differences, I can navigate foreign environments, and I will become a more competent individual. Cultural Sensitivity: Learning the cultural values and norms is not only fascinating, but can help us understand international issues and conflicts, or even relate to the cultural norms of an immigrant friend. It is an important skill to be able to shift perspectives and see where someone else is coming from or even better understand my own cultural values and biases and to develop a more sophisticated way of looking at the world.
In today’s increasingly global society, it is important to acquire the skills to communicate across cultures, and this means understanding more than just a different language. Studying abroad will help me become familiar with the customs and traditions of the country, in addition to the language. By interacting with locals, I can develop an appreciation for the culture and its differences from my own. Personal Interests: Even as a toddler, I was fascinated with maps. I have always had a profound interest in history and geography, and it was a contributing factor for my participation in the Global Studies Academy and is also the reason why I chose the language and culture study abroad program.
I have garnered some of my interest from other family members like my grandfather and great-grandfather who were fluent in several world languages and have traveled abroad for pleasure and work. I have chosen study abroad in Spain because I have been learning Spanish for more than a year now, and I thoroughly enjoy it. Spanish class has always been very interesting and one of my favorite classes to attend. I chose to study Spanish because it is the second most widely spoken language in the place I currently live. I have decided to travel to Spain to further gain knowledge about their culture and in my opinion, there is no substitute for learning through real-life experiences.