Term: Fall 2016
Studying abroad has expanded my network of friends and contacts, and it's given me reasons to travel more. Having joined both a soccer team and a satirical magazine at the local university in London (UCL), I left with two groups of people with whom to keep in contact and visit as soon as this summer. Additionally, I had the opportunity to intern at a production company, which led to city-wide exploration and another few friends.
Advice for future #TerpsAbroad: As a first-generation American, I recommend not being afraid of going abroad by yourself with no friends. It's a lot easier to do that when you have no friends to begin with, but it's an enriching experience either way. It gave me more motivation to go get involved in the local communities there which was rewarding. Don't be afraid to be the odd one out.
I found that a lot of European study abroad [programs targeting] Americans were less immersion-oriented than I assumed/hoped. I found myself having to break out of my luxurious comfortable zone to get involved, which was uncomfortable by definition but certainly worthwhile in execution.