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Author Archives: umwcie

Tips for traveling alone

Traveling alone is likely one of the most daunting experiences you will face if you go abroad for an extended period. It is especially challenging if you don’t speak the language of the country you’re visiting. However, traveling alone can also be a very rewarding and confidence-building experience. Some people may actually prefer going places … Continue reading »

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Culture Shock: Expectations vs. Reality

Any student who is studying abroad has probably heard or read about the five stages of culture shock. As I prepared for my semester abroad in Morocco, I was warned about culture shock by both CIE and my program in Morocco. Not only was it incorporated into orientation, but it showed up in many informational … Continue reading »

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Returning to Europe

My final post on the blog I kept while studying abroad reflects on coming back home after having spent five months in Paris. On rereading what I had written I’m transported back to the moment when I was still in Paris and unsure of what the future would hold. At the time I felt that … Continue reading »

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Learning to Assimilate Abroad

One of the most difficult aspects of studying abroad is being able to learn how to assimilate to the local culture. I know that I certainly struggled with this during my stay in Spain. However, having already experienced that struggle, I now have some tips that I can share with future study abroad students. Do … Continue reading »

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Making the most of your homestay

Many study abroad programs include the opportunity to stay with a host family rather than living independently or in student housing. It may seem intimidating to spend your entire time abroad in someone else’s home, but I highly recommend staying with a host family if you have the option. It is one of the best … Continue reading »

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Can I Stay [Forever]? : On Returning Home After Study Abroad

What you’ve feared since first leaving the United States a few months ago has arrived: coming home. Perhaps settling into your country was a little rough at first – homesick and unsure of how to feel in your new surroundings you adjusted slowly to the terrain. Or, perhaps your experience was smooth sailing from the … Continue reading »

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Dear Mom, I’m Homesick

So you pull the trigger and decide to study abroad! There are a lot of feelings swirling around in your head. You’re anxious to travel, stressed for packing and maybe a little unsure of yourself, but you bury those feelings and make it on the plane. It’s all a flurry when you arrive at your … Continue reading »

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Dealing with the Language Barrier

When I chose to study abroad in Morocco, language was one of my primary considerations. After two and a half years of studying Arabic at UMW, I knew I wanted to go somewhere where I could continue studying it, and Morocco was my top choice. Though I knew communication would be a challenge, it was … Continue reading »

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Making the Most

Ask anyone who has studied abroad, and they will tell you it was the best experience of their life. Ask me about my study abroad experience, and I won’t say any different. I was able to study in Cork, Ireland with three of my closest friends, and I was determined from the start to make … Continue reading »

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Learning How to Travel Well With Others

Tips and tricks for when you are traveling in a group.  International travel is one of those things that can make or break friendships. I chose to study abroad in Cork, Ireland with three of my closest college friends and roommates. While making this decision, I expressed my concern about going abroad with my best … Continue reading »

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