I am beyond blessed that my study abroad experience thus far has been extremely transformative, and it has only been a little over a month since I first arrived in Cape Town, South Africa. I have been transformed emotionally, spiritually, mentally, and physically. It has been overwhelmingly uplifting to say the least. It is interesting to note that in my first blog post, I hinted at facing potential change in personal and professional goals while studying abroad. Well, it has happened ladies and gentlemen.
Since the start of my matriculation at Howard University, I knew that I would attend graduate school. Additionally, I have an A-type personality, therefore the thought of not going straight to graduate school never passed my mind until now! I have fallen in love with the international world, and I wish I could stay longer than a semester. Ultimately, I have decided to take a gap year between my undergraduate and graduate studies to travel abroad again and teach English. If you would have asked me three years ago what my plans were after college, I would have not told you a gap year was in my plan. I am truly moved! Additionally, I am a living testimony that study abroad truly changes students’ lives. It is such a precious experience that I wish every college student could enjoy, therefore I will highly encourage students to study abroad upon my return to the states.
Interesting enough, I do not want to return to the states, which is why I wish my stay in Cape Town was a bit longer. I have never felt so free in my 20 years of life. I feel entirely independent and boundless. Also, I have developed a new goal to live outside of the United States for a short period of time. I truly want to see the world, and I think it is an honor to have the opportunity to see the world before departing from it! There are so many beautiful places to explore and amazing people to meet.
Furthermore, studying abroad has made me prioritize the importance of being knowledgeable about global issues. My community development class earlier this week was quite interesting. We learned about climate change and its impact on the environment. This is just one example to prove the importance of having global knowledge not only related to politics, but other fields and areas of study as well.
Again, studying abroad is one of the best decisions I have ever made in my life! I am extremely pleased with the transformation that has occurred within me and I look forward to the change that will occur in future weeks to come. This is what happens when we fully open our mind, body, and soul to new experiences. Life is a series of experiences, and it is our experiences that can change our trajectory tremendously. Lastly, life is a course of nonstop learning. Don’t ever stop growing, learning, experiencing, or living! Be transformed and transform others!
More Blogs From This Author
I am Ameer Dunston, a junior finance major & television & film minor from Buffalo, NY at Howard University. Additionally I am a 2016 Gates Millennium Scholar and I love to uplift others through any source possible.