Study abroad returnees share global experiences at celebration

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Posted: Friday, September 20, 2013 11:05 am | Updated: 6:28 pm, Mon Sep 30, 2013.

The Office of International Education hosted a get together September 13th on the Moody Hall lawn for students who have returned to St. Edwards after studying abroad. The students who attended  tie dyed “Study Abroad Returnee: Topper’d the World” t-shirts while telling stories from their study abroad experience.

According to several of the returnees, many gathered countless life-changing memories that they will never forget. “The overall experience was incredible," junior Linh Le, who studied in San Jose, Costa Rica, said. "Definitely life-changing and I came back a more confident person. It was a great adventure.”

Each returnee had a different reason for taking the opportunity to study abroad, whether for the intended major, a dream, or for the overall experience. “There are few times in my life that I’ll be able to drop everything and go somewhere else,” sophomore Elaine Kieffer, who studied in Buenos Aires, Argentina, said.

Patricia Lopez, who is a senior this year at St. Edwards University, decided to take the course of action needed in order to fulfill her childhood aspiration. This meant taking the time to visit the office of international education to plan her trip for Japan. “I chose to study in Japan because I wanted to improve my Japanese language proficiency, and it has been one of my childhood dreams to go and visit,” Lopez said. “My favorite overall memory had to be when I got lost on the first day in Japan, and I had to get directions by an elderly Japanese lady.”

Returnees had the chance to explore a different culture and gain a new perspective while studying abroad. These experiences provided a deeper understanding of the diverse cultures, according to Le. “I wanted to explore out of the box and out of my comfort zone, to find out who I really am, by learning and exploring a new culture.”

Returnees decided to make the most out of their college life at St. Edwards by studying abroad in one of the nine partner countries around the world, which include France, Scotland, Spain and many more.

The Office of International Studies challenges you, as a part of the St. Edwards Hilltopper community, to “take on your world.”

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