A New Journey

Ava Renbarger
January 27, 2019

For the next five months, I will be studying abroad in Christchurch, New Zealand! With all the excitement of traveling to such an exciting place over a long period, also comes a lot of stress. I have just begun packing, which has most certainly been the most difficult task yet! New Zealand is sort of tricky because when packing you should prepare for all seasons when traveling there. So, with that being said, there is a lot of unknown on what right to pack and what is wrong. Besides the packing being difficult, everything else in general has been relatively easy preparing for my trip. My IES Abroad coordinators and contacts have been very helpful and keep in touch often. New Zealand is also relatively laid back and getting my visa, passport, and everything else squared away has been a smooth process. I believe the scariest part for me in terms of studying abroad is the unknown of it all. It is all exciting and nerve-wracking for many different reasons but pushing yourself out of your comfort zone to do something this amazing is a scary thought at times, which will undoubtedly be worth it in the end. This will be my first time away from home for five straight months and believe I am going to learn a lot about myself but as well as the diversity and difference of cultures. I initially chose to study abroad in New Zealand for several reasons. My main reason being, that it is somewhere I have always dreamt of seeing and I never really thought I would get the chance. The flight is very long and many people do it once if anything because of how much traveling is involved just to get there. Another reason I chose New Zealand is its obvious unique beauty that you will not see throughout the rest of the world. It has always been a country I have been fascinated in and have heard so much about that I am ecstatic to finally be able to see it for myself. On top of this, I am currently studying Speech Pathology and because New Zealand’s main language is English, it was one of the few places abroad I was able to go that would allow me to further my academic studies, as well. With all the stress and eagerness that comes with waiting for my trip, I am extremely excited to experience all New Zealand has to offer and completely indulging in the island culture. Look forward to photos and posts on my blog in the next coming weeks!

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Ava Renbarger

<p class="MsoBodyText" style="margin-top:.45pt"><span style="line-height:103%">Beyond my academic interests, I am a firm believer in exploring the world and what nature has to offer. Hiking, traveling, exercising are some of my main interests. I believe that life is about embracing every opportunity that comes your way. In the end, a lifetime is a string of experiences and this experience would be one to be remembered.</span></p>

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Indiana University
South Bend, IN
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