Studying Abroad

“There is nothing like returning to a place that remains unchanged to find the ways in which you yourself have altered.”

Nelson Mandela

 If someone had told me a year ago I was about to live one of the best experiences of my life, I would not believe that at all. However, seven months ago I started a journey that has completely changed my life in so many different ways that it is even hard to explain. Leaving my country to live in a place I had never been before, with people I did not know at all and for so long, is such a challenge. Most people tell me all the time it takes a lot of courage to do such a thing, but I always reply, well, is not life about challenges and adventurous experiences?

I have never been a shy or dependent person, however, when I came to America, it was hard for me to be able to be completely myself.  I still remember how I used to feel lost the first weeks of classes, walking around campus looking for the right building and room, how I barely participated in classes, even when I’ve always been a talkative person, and how I used to be very self-concerned about my accent. It has been seven months since I came to America, and I can totally say that I have grown as a person due to this experience.

By the end of last semester, I had a lot of friends outside the international students, I could easily go to New York City by myself and not getting lost and I found funny how even my English improved a lot to the point that I do not embarrassed about my accent anymore.

 My time in this country has definitively been one of the best experiences of my life but it does not mean it has been easy all the time, however, learning is always about beating obstacles. I can tell I have been improve many skills since I came here, my English is a lot better, for example, but also, I have learn about life. I have learn to be independent and to stand for myself, but also, my willing for learning about other cultures has incredibly grown, as well as my world view, and at the end of this journey, that is all what I’m going to take with me back home.

However, every journey comes to an end, and even when this experience is about to finish, here, it is about to start in the place where I was born. Studying abroad is not only about the experiences you live in the host country, but also about the experiences you share once you are back home.

I have been blessed with so many great experiences but now it is my time to take all what I have learned and share it with my people. I’m an education major student, and one of the most beautiful things about teaching is when you are able to give without getting anything in return. I think that the most important things I am taking with me to Costa Rica are not those in my suit case but those in my heart. I am a passionate person, and one of the things I enjoy the most is to teach, so I cannot wait to be back home and fill little hearts with knowledge and love.

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