Studying abroad is a watershed moment in life for a student. This is because the new environment provides students with new opportunities of learning foreign language and interacting with a different culture of people. Further, studying abroad is quite interesting since one is able to learn of the new environment effectively through direct interaction with the environment instead of reading text concerning the new learning new country. This paper depicts my watershed moment in life as a result of undertaking my studies abroad in the United States.
The breaking of the news that I was to undertake my studies abroad, in the United States of America, was the foundation of an overwhelming joy in my life. I never knew what studying abroad meant in one’s life. As such, I had a strong desire of setting my foot in this country so that I could explore the taste of international studies.
One of the things, which amused me, is the way I had to learn to write proficient English and take my studies in English language. Although at the beginning things seemed quite challenging and difficult, I cannot deny that I have really embraced this new cultural environment, and I currently feel as if I am a member of this culture. English was a real trouble in my life. However, with constant interaction with students in U.S I have really improved my communication skills although I am yet to perfect the same.
In the classroom, I have been able to see a different role of the teacher, and students are granted an exemplary higher autonomy. This leads to attainment of a mutual interaction between students and lesson facilitators. On the same note, the interaction enables one to feel at home despite being from a different nationality.
I used to have strong adherence to my cultural practices as Amuzie and Winke (2009) claims. However, I have been shocked of how I have recently embraced various cultural practices in the U.S. This is quite challenging for me, but I have appreciated the concept that culture is dynamic and socially instituted.
Being in a foreign country made me feel a bit lonely. However, you will be amused to find that people in U.S are so hospital to individuals from different nationalities (Byram, & Feng, 2006). With respect to this, U.S people will ever offer support to new individuals in the country. This type of support includes cultural guidance, material support, and financial support. In addition, one receives an extra-ordinary moral support, which aids in eliminating all forms of loneliness in this new society. This has made me take another perception of life on why I should be accommodative to all human beings despite differences in nationality.
Being new in U.S, I never knew that I would manage to make great pals in my life. As such, the accommodative nature of this society enabled me to make great friends whom I constantly interact with and hang out with during leisure time. These friends have also contributed significantly towards assisting me to embrace the new living style, in the United States of America.
My main aim of going to U.S was to study. As such, I have been able to identify my career at an early age while studying in the United States. Further, my abroad studies have contributed significantly towards helping me to define my interests, as well as identify opportunities, which exists under my career path. This includes the development of self-discipline towards attainment of success in the learning process. I attribute this to the great tutors who have dedicated their time and resources towards guiding me on how to mold my career.
I believe that when one studies in his or her own country, he or she limits the chances of broadening personal experience. I have broadened my experience in terms of landmarks and historical infrastructures while being a student in the United States. Further, I have a developed a new perspective for my country. This includes construction and development of modern infrastructure, and adoption of an effective communication channel. I cannot deny that I have learnt English in the country where this international language is spoken. I take this as an achievement in my life.
Before I got to United States, I was not in a position to develop self-confidence. However, my interactions with individuals from this country have contributed towards attainment of self-confidence in all activities that I undertake. Moreover, I am confident in expressing myself effectively through the English language. This grants me an opportunity to travel freely to all countries, which recognize English as an international language. This has led me to accept the argument by McKeown (2009) that interaction with a new culture facilitates in effective learning of the new culture language.
Finally, being abroad has acted as the beginning of my transition from student to adulthood. This is because, in this country, I rely on myself for all the things that I undertake. This has enabled me to develop a strong personal confidence, interest in international affairs, and become a social being. In addition, I have attained adequate skills on how to take control of my future in all my endeavors.
In conclusion, studying abroad has been my watershed moment in my life. I have developed new concepts and perceptions about life and focused on achieving my goals and objectives. In addition, I have been able to develop the concept of adulthood. As such, I focus on working in this new nation, which has being my watershed in my life.
Amuzie, G, & Winke, P. (2009). Changes in Language Learning Beliefs as a Result of Study
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Byram, M, & Feng, A. (2006). Living and Studying Abroad: Research and Practice.
Germany: Library of Congress Cataloging in Publication Data.
McKeown, J. (2009). The First Time Effect: The Impact of Study Abroad on College Student
Intellectual Development. New York, United States of America: State University of New York.