Well, this certainly wasn’t the semester that any of us imagined.
We’ve all heard that studying abroad is a life-changing experience. Yes, it’s easy to joke about the ubiquitous nature of this sentiment, and many of us have (probably) rolled our eyes at the expectations that accompany this kind of broad generalization. When we reflect beyond the catch-all nature of this idea, we can understand its meaning better.
Study abroad is life-changing in the way that it stretches us to limits that we never knew we had. Whether it’s a cultural experience that changes how we view our own habits, a language breakthrough that opens up new communication possibilities, or a disappointing circumstance that lingers on the memory long after the initial feelings fade, the truth remains that studying abroad changes us.
None of us could expect to be changed this much.
In the weeks since the COVID-19 news, our Correspondents have reckoned with their ever-changing circumstances with such thoughtfulness, authenticity, and vulnerability. Reflection, creative expression, and analysis are a privilege even when life feels somewhat normal, let alone when we’re watching a global pandemic unfold in real time. In this time of increased uncertainty, these students have already shown an incredible level of leadership by sharing their thoughts and feelings with the world.
Please read the following excerpts from posts our Correspondents have shared, and join all of us at IES Abroad as we move forward, together, and eagerly await a time when all of us can travel and explore the world again.