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This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at MNSU chapter.


Have you ever thought about studying in another country for a summer or even a semester? If someone would have asked me that question a year ago, I would have said no. About 10 months ago, I applied for the experience of a lifetime and studied abroad in the Netherlands for six months.

Reason 1:

Experience a new culture.

Traveling outside of the US gave me a new perspective on the world. There are so many cultures I got to be apart of in the Netherlands. I celebrated King’s Day in the Netherlands, which is their national holiday. Everyone wears orange and there are concerts and tons of food. I also got the opportunity to try and learn Dutch. Let me tell you, it’s a very hard language to learn. I lived in an apartment with other study abroad students from all other the world and we would have these international dinners to try different foods once a month. This was one of my favorite events.


Reason 2:

Meet life long friends.

I traveled to the Netherlands not knowing one person. I found out that other people came with friends from their home country. It was actually the best decision coming without knowing anyone because I was so open to meeting more people. Throughout the six months abroad, I met so many great friends. They are from Ireland, the US, France, Germany and Hungary. These girls helped when things got lonely. I couldn’t of asked for better friends to travel, drink wine, go clubbing with, go grocery shopping, and of course go biking with.


Reason 3:

Learn about yourself.

When I left the US, I couldn’t wait to travel the world. People told me all the time, “if you travel you will find yourself.” I didn’t believe it at first, but after six months, I can truly say that I learned more about myself than I could have imagined. Being over 4,000 miles away from everything and everyone I know wasn’t easy. It felt lonely for more days than I expected but each day I got stronger. I felt more confident to do things by myself. I traveled to different cities by myself and learned to really enjoy my own company. I get my energy from other people, so traveling alone was something I couldn’t do before this. I am also more open for spontaneous adventures after being abroad. When it comes to traveling, you can never plan everything, so going with the flow is all part of the process.

These are just a few of the reasons to study abroad. There are so many more. I hope that you get out of your comfort zone and study abroad. It will really change you and might just be the best time of your life. If not, at least you tried something new. I am wishing I could go back.