Student reminisces on study abroad experience
March 31, 2017
Filed under Features
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Sanam Abedini, a senior at CSUSM, studied abroad in Uppsala, Sweden for a full academic year from fall of 2016 through the spring of 2017.
What was the most influential thing that you took away from the study abroad experience?
I found out who I am. I found that I can be self-reliant and depend on myself and that I am comfortable with who I am. I also learned a lot about the world.
Would you say that studying abroad is affordable for most students?
Absolutely— I believe that it depends on how long you decide you want to go. Your financial aid carries over from your school, so whatever you pay here, is what you will pay in the other country. That expense is without your plane ticket, food and housing but the tuition is pretty much the same because you are a placeholder for someone else. There are also a lot of grants and scholarships that you can apply for.
What was the most intriguing thing you learned about the culture of your host country?
I learned the way that social differences are played out in different countries. I believe when you study abroad, you see that people have different cultural backgrounds and cultural identities.
What materialistic thing did you miss the most about California while you were studying overseas?
The food. I missed having easy access to everything at any time. When I went to Sweden, restaurants weren’t open late. Restaurants would close around 5 p.m.
What was the hardest thing about studying abroad?
Being unable to handle the weather. Growing up in California, I had never been exposed to snow. Public transportation was difficult too.
Would you recommend the study abroad experience to other students?
Absolutely—I believe that every student should be required to study abroad for at least a semester. When you study abroad, your life changes. Everybody should at least consider it, learn more about it and do it.