Reason You Chose this Program: I chose the program because it was over the summer and would not interfere with my strict semester course load. I also chose it because I am very interested in European, especially Germanic, history.
Favorite Class: This program only had one class - The History of Berlin. It was extremely interesting and because we only had one class we were able to explore the modern aspects of the city as well as study hands on the rich history and past Berlin has experienced.
Describe the Housing Situation: We lived in a hotel for the month we were there and we all had one roommate.
Advice to Future Study Abroad Participants: Don't bring "the States" abroad with you...you will be going back there sooner than you think so live in the moment abroad and leave any stressors behind.
Best Memory: My best memory was a spur of the moment group outing to see AC/DC in concert at the Olympic Stadium in Berlin. It was an incredible experience to see a great band, view an important artifact of the city that is sometimes overlooked, and also to be able to experience the culture and people of Berlin outside of the tourist city hustle and bustle.
Biggest Surprise: The cultural experience was shocking because everyone is so friendly and willing to help. Also, nothing there is chaotic like it may seem here in the U.S. Everything is very well organized and run efficiently.
If I could do it over I would: ...have tried to travel outside of Berlin.
Discuss your experience with culture schock or reverse culture shock: There was no real culture shock arriving in Germany, just amazement. Even though I have lived in the U.S. my whole life, the culture shock coming back was a little surprising. I feel like everything here should be run like it is there.
Greatest Challenge: Living within my means.
Going abroad versus staying on campus, discuss: There is no comparison - staying on campus is great long term, but the point of going to college is to get a well-rounded education. You can't round out an education without experiencing a different culture hands on. It gives you a different insight and new appreciations.
What you know now that you didn't before: Rumors about the temperaments and attitudes about people in foreign countries aren't always true.
Scholarship Recommendations: I went to the Study Abroad Office's scholarship meeting and they pretty much laid out everywhere I could have looked. Always try to apply for scholarships in the Hutton Honors college. Even if you are not a student of Hutton, they are very generous with their study abroad scholarships.