UMD: A Globally Connected University

Steven McCord

Steven McCord

Program: ENGR Exchange: Universidad Politecnica Valencia (UPV)
Term: Spring 2016
Major: Mechanical Engineering

Studying abroad  was an incredible personal experience. I have met so many new people and have grown so much as a person. I would say I have a deeper understanding of the world, of people, and of myself after it. It was challenging to be in a totally new environment and try to thrive there, but that is what made it exciting for me. I had to totally branch out and make new friends. It seems scary but it was actually something I will never forget - and now I have a ton of international friends. 

There were so many awesome things about my experience that were memorable. Las Fallas in Valencia, Ibiza, traveling the country/ continent, speaking spanish, etc. Honestly, one of the coolest things which I will never forget is the feeling of belonging in a new place. Obviously, I was foreign but I was accepted for who I was there and I made great friends in the process. 

Advice for future #TerpsAbroad: I tell people all the time they should do it. Spain for one, is pretty cheap if you're not traveling, and it’s tons of fun. Also, you're young - going on adventures should be what youth is all about. Learning about yourself and the world should be done now - not when you're retired and it hardly matters anymore because you have no long future life to apply your newfound knowledge. You have nothing to lose and a world to gain - just grab life by the horns and do it.