The issue of study abroad has been discussed over and over again on this blog, probably moreso than any other single topic. However, it really testifies to the experiences and rewards that studying abroad can bring to a student, and today, I am going to provide my two cents’ worth on the matter.
I studied abroad in Kyoto, Japan, and while many students choose to study abroad for a semester, I chose to spend my entire year abroad with the Associated Kyoto Program, a Pomona-approved program. I am not exaggerating when I say it was a life-changing experience, and even now, I look back on my junior year as a year filled with fun, joy and wonder.
Before I wax lyrical about the country, I would like to state my motivations for studying abroad in Japan, and for a year.
- I had never been to Japan.
- I wanted to travel all over Japan cheaply.
- I wanted to improve my Japanese.
- I wanted to experience the year in a life of a Japanese family.
Studying abroad for a year allowed me to realize all these personal goals. I lived for the year with a host family that spoke only Japanese with a thick local dialect, which meant a I was completely immersed in the language. From the moment I woke up to the moment I slept, I had no option but to communicate in Japanese. Life was an endless Oldenborg language table. [Read more…]