University:

Email Address:

Phone Number:

France

Flight Voucher $1,000 Flight Voucher when you apply with code by February 27, 2020

What to Expect from Study Abroad: Inside the Head of a Student

December 06, 2013
by CEA MOJO
Studying abroad has been one of the most emotionally taxing experiences I’ve ever had. I came into this semester confident; I’m in my senior year, and this isn’t the first time I’ve been abroad. But spending a semester living in the home of an unfamiliar family, in a foreign culture, and being unsure of the language has definitely been a bit of a culture shock.

  At home, I effortlessly interact with others. If I bump into someone, I excuse myself without having to think about it. In a foreign country, everything is different. My communication skills are limited, and everything I do requires a lot more energy. In class, I always have to pay attention. If I zone out for a second at home, I can easily find my place again. When the courses are all taught in a language that is not my own, I have to stay focused or I risk becoming completely lost.

Some days I’ll get home and feel too exhausted from a long day of class to communicate with my host family. Often I know what I want to say, but I struggle to say it. I feel trapped inside my head sometimes.

If you were to peak inside the head of a student abroad, you would be amazed at how much thought is going on. I live my daily life being more aware of everything around me, because everything is just unfamiliar enough that I really need to pay attention. Living abroad has been taxing and exhausting, but also incredibly rewarding.

Although communication is more difficult, my classes are not. I can focus more on learning than on homework and assignments. I can feel myself making great leaps and bounds in my language skills. Additionally, every small opportunity is reason for celebration. I survived, I was understood, and I am proud of myself.

At home, it’s easy to become caught up in the flow of everyday life. I can go about my day feeling slightly annoyed and stressed out about everything I have to do. In France, I’m able to enjoy every interaction, and even the most menial tasks leave me feeling accomplished because I was able to do something in a language that is not my own. This experience has been a stressful one, but one that I wouldn’t trade for the world.

Aimee Goffinet is the Fall 2013 CEA MOJO for Grenoble, France. She is currently a senior at the University of Kentucky.


Read more about our CEA MOJO Bloggers & Photographers.
 
Load more comments
Thank you for the comment! Your comment must be approved first
comment-avatar


VIEW POSTS BY CATEGORY

Receive a $1,000 Flight Voucher when you apply by February 27, 2020

Get your flight voucher code and access to Passbook in two easy steps. With Passbook, you can track your favorite programs and courses, save flight vouchers, and watch videos on the destination you're interested in.

Apply Now

Step 1 of 2

Step 2 of 2


*By providing your mobile number, you agree to receive recurring text messages from CEA Study Abroad notifying you of important program deadlines. Message and data rates may apply.

Privacy Policy   |   Mobile Terms   |   Voucher Rules

Your flight voucher has been added to your Passbook. Apply now or view your Passbook to begin the next step in your journey.

LET'S CHAT