From the moment I stepped on the Bradley University campus, I knew I wanted to study abroad. Within my first few weeks at Bradley, I made a visit to the Study Abroad Office. They were so great about everything including planning when to go, what classes to take, housing options, cost and most importantly, where I could go. They offered so many great opportunities and my options were endless!
In the end, I chose Paris, France and it was possibly the best choice of my life. Unfortunately, due to COVID-19 my time was cut short, but I still had an amazing time. I lived in the 17th district in an apartment with a host family. They were so kind and I was able to really improve my conversational French by having conversations on a daily basis. It was so helpful to have such a supportive family through it all.
Being in the 17th district, I was close to multiple parks, metro stops, a shopping center, restaurants, cafes and bars and I was about a mile from Arc de Triomphe. I loved the neighborhood and everything that there was to do. The rest of the city kept me busy as well. There are so many unique neighborhoods throughout France and I definitely didn’t see more than half of them. That is what I loved so much about this city, I could always find something to do. Some of my favorite places were the Jardin du Palais Royal, Musée d’Orsay, the Seine and the 3rd district. If you ever get the chance to go to Paris, take it!
While living in Paris, France for two months I was able to travel to 6 other countries. I went to Belgium, Germany, Sweden, Denmark, Spain and Portugal. They were all incredible, but I would have to say my favorite place was Portugal. Myself and two friends spent about 3 days in Lisbon, Portugal right before we were sent home. We experienced so much in our short trip like taking a sailboat ride at sunset, exploring local markets and eating wonderful food.
There are so many benefits to studying abroad. I learned so much more about the language and culture while abroad than I did in the classroom at Bradley. It also pushed me out of my comfort zone and I was able to experience so many wonderful things, not to mention the incredible people I met too. I am forever thankful for my experiences and opportunities. I will always recommend studying abroad!