Friday, December 11, 2009

Only a little bit away

Ok guys, so it's been a really long time. I finally figured out the program I'm going with, AIFS, for next semester. I think I have everything turned in that I needed. It's crazy to think that in a little over a month I'll be in another country (happily without a language barrier), in another continent, across an ocean, and away from pretty much everything that I'm used to. But I guess that's the point of studying abroad isn't it??

So I'm gonna have an interesting time packing for next semester, I'm no good at packing light. Guess I'm gonna have to learn. I did buy a card for Hosteling International, so have that, they have some really cheap rooms. I don't think I'm gonna get a Euro Rail pass; they have so many different types and I just don't know where I'm gonna go yet. I am wondering about the whole drinking thing over there, I have a feeling that for a solid amount of people the drinking is a big part of going over there. As to what I'll do, we'll see, but don't worry, I have no intention of going over there to get drunk. Seems like it might be a waste, seeing as this might be my one chance to really see London, and Europe.

Now, I can safely say that I'll miss my friends. Some of my friends here at Clemson have become almost like family, it'll be hard to not see them for that long. Honestly it might be as bad not seeing them as it will be not seeing my family. Thank goodness for Skype, and Facebook, and email, and to a much lesser degree Twitter.

Oh and thank goodness for a nice rain jacket (thanks mom, and by extension dad), don't wanna let that rain get to me. And I was thinking about maybe getting a Kindle, any thoughts?

My faith is another thing I've been thinking about with study abroad. Now, it helps that I can go to Mass (I've already google mapped where the church is) and have it in English. Of course I'll miss all the people at St. Andrew's and the learning that's taken place there, for me, so far. But, I'll be back, so there's plenty more time for that.

That's all I really have for now, decidedly to randomly update this tonight.

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Some research

Alright so the last few days I've looked at one or two programs. The most recent one is AIFS, the American Institute for Foreign Study, which had some pretty cool programs. Most of the stuff is done through Richmond, the American International University, which I have no idea about, but that's something that doesn't really bother me, I don't think it matters who issues the stuff, as long as you study abroad. Of course, schools like Oxford or the London School of Economics (which at some point I actually think I'm going to look at) look better than something like Richmond, but that's cool.

They actually had a nice selection of places, like Florence (Website), Rome (Website), Paris (Website), and London (Website). The only thing was the cost was a little much, for everywhere but London around 17 grand, which is more than we're (ok, really my parents, not so much me) paying now, which means I'd need a scholarship to do this one. I guess I might end up applying for more than one program to make sure. Again though, their application fee is $95, which is more than most of the college ones were. Another things was the fact that the programs had built-in trips, which can be good or bad. The good part is that everything is planned for you, which makes life easier, and it's probably safer than traveling by yourself or in a smaller group. But I also don't know if I want to have certain times locked in forcing me to travel. I guess I could skip them, but that would be a waste of money.

They did seem to have good classes, and in Italy I would take an Italian course, which I think I could handle, considering I would be there. The Rome one has like a two week orientaion, and both there and Florence you have to take Italian language classes to gain some knowledge of the language.

The issue in London would be that it's available for juniors and seniors. By that point I will technically be a junior by hours, but I won't really be a junior. So I'll have to check up on that. I think it would be cool to be in London (my mom also thinks that would be a good place if in London), although through another program I found a school not far from London, the University of Central Lancashire (Website), which looks cool. Heck I even found that there's a Catholic Church really close. So many options....glad I'm looking now, 'cause there are so many different third-party programs that I could do. My only question about these is whether or not I'd get to meet a lot of people from that country, or if the program is run separately for international students, which might not be the same, although I guess if there were a lot of locals that would mean it’s in the local language. We’ll see.

PS the links are to the programs in the places I was mentioning, not the schools I would go to, but they obviously mention which school it is, at least I think. Also, I feel like this turned out to be a bit rambling, hopefully the more I write here the better I'll get at it. Key word there is hopefully, no promises...:)

Friday, May 29, 2009

Why I'm doing this

Alright guys, so this is basically where I want to talk about my study abroad experience. Maybe no one will read it, but hey, hopefully it'll keep me focused on my goal: to go somewhere other than the United States, attend a University, and travel. Really the basic choice is to go to Europe. It's relatively small, has good public transportation, and hopefully will be relatively close to America so that it won't be crazy. But the big question is where to go within Europe. Right now I'm thinking either England or Italy, and possibly France. The classes of course have to be in English. Some of the countries, like Spain, just don't interest me because of the language issues, and aren't places I particularly want to live in. So I have to decide that, and what program I want to do, and what school I want to go to, because I want to take certain classes. It's a lot to figure out. But I'm getting my passport renewed soon, so that I have that ready. Anyways, any thoughts on this whole thing would be cool. I think you can comment on the posts??