Experiencing a new country is an invaluable and worthwhile experience. At the beginning of my trip I was very excited but I was slightly nervous about gettting out of my comfort zone. After completing the first few weeks of my program, I have grown comfortable with life abroad and my class schedule so hopefully my perspective can help students gain insight on the Study Abroad experience.
When I first began my time at the University of Alabama, I never imagined that I would be able to travel and get college credit at the same time. This past year, I learned about this opportunity through my teachers as well as friends who had studied abroad. Studying in Madrid was very conducive to my Spanish minor and the ability to live in Spain and immerse my self in the language and culture seemed like a fantastic opportunity.
Throughout the previous spring semester, I attended meetings and filled out the necessary documents for Study Abroad. During the semester, the actual trip seemed so far away, but now that I am here in Madrid, everything is moving so quickly.
During the first week of the program in Madrid, I did feel home sick and I really missed my family. I questioned if spending a significant time away from home was right for me but now I man very comfortable in Spain. I have become close with many of my fellow students and even made some Spanish friends.
I am truly enjoying this opportunity and I hope to further my knowledge of Spanish. Although I have taken Spanish in high school and college, I have learned a significant amount of Spanish in the relatively short time that I have be in the country. From classes and talking to locals, I have learned new vocabulary, grammar points, and nuance aspects of the language. Seeing new sights and a new culture is extremely important to me and I have seen so much in Spain that I would never have been to experience by simply taking Spanish classes. One of the best examples of this is when I went to the Spain vs. Sweden soccer match in Santiago Bernabéu. I am very excited to do so much more in Spain.