My Summer Abroad in Europe
I chose to attend the Summer Europe trip with International Business Seminars because I was searching for a program that was not too long, would lead me to multiple European countries, and help me with my future career. IBS stood out to me because it was led by experienced business professionals that would teach me while also giving me room to learn on my own. I liked that this trip was academically focused on multiple aspects of businesses because it gave me a greater perspective on each city we visited.
Experience is the best teacher
Once I chose to go on the trip, I was expecting and hoping to gain a better understanding of the rest of the world and I certainly did. I learned about each country we visited and gained a new perspective on the United States. The most important outcome from the trip was gaining more confidence in myself, knowledge on traveling, better communication skills, and a better perspective on the world as a whole. Since I had never been to Europe before, I was expecting each country to be very different than the United States; however, I learned how similar the cultures are which made it not as scary as I thought. The people in Europe enjoy the same things, struggle with the same things, and experience the same parts of life that we do in the US.
My roommate and I got on the tube one night in London to go to dinner and we met a girl with a very adorable dog and started talking to her. She was from Scotland, but currently living and working in London. She said she had graduated from school and had only been in London for 2 or 3 years. She told us how much she loved living in this new place and gave us some recommendations on good places to eat that don’t have a lot of tourists. It was nice to get advice from a local and we ended up eating at a great Lebanese restaurant with a new bakery across the street for dessert. Seeing the similarities between my home and the new cities made it easier to adapt and gives me hope of living somewhere new in the future!
My favorite part of the trip was arriving in a new city and discovering the new and old things each city had to offer. I enjoyed seeing their historic locations while also shopping and trying new foods. I enjoyed walking outside and discovering my way around each city. I enjoyed being able to experience big and small cities. From London to Innsbruck, to Broc, we were able to experience large growing cities, moderately sized cities, and even small cities in the Alps. This variety helped me gain a better perspective on what living in Europe would really be like.
Stepping out of my comfort zone
The most important thing I learned on the trip was to enjoy doing things that are out of my comfort zone because that is where I grow. I have never traveled on my own and the trip pushed me to plan and decide what I wanted to learn from each city and company we visited.
It challenged me to ask more questions about topics I had never really discussed. It taught me to think of each situation from multiple perspectives. For example, the professors that spoke to us shared their perspective on the EU and Brexit and this was something I had never questioned before. It was cool to hear this situation from multiple people from different countries.
Overall, the experience I had with International Business Seminars in Europe this past summer was one I will never forget. It taught me many things from academics, to different cultures, to history, and even my own strengths and weaknesses. If you want to grow, experience new things, get out of your comfort zone, taste new food, and have a great summer, I would recommend going to Europe with IBS! I made great memories that will last a lifetime!