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Studying Abroad: La Dolce Vita

dad

My dad and I overlooking Florence

For some people, traveling is when you are on your way to an annual family reunion where you know you will be asked the same questions by distant relatives. For some, travel can be an exotic trip like backpacking through the Amazon or doing mission work in Southeast Asia. For me, traveling is one of my passions in life. I have had the travel bug from a young age and I am always up for a new adventure. Traveling has been a way for me to grow as an individual through experiencing new cultures, meeting new people, celebrating life, eating new food, and most importantly, finding myself. Traveling has enriched my life so much and I can’t wait to expand my horizons even more by studying abroad next semester in Florence, Italy!

From as long as I can remember, I have always dreamed of studying abroad in college. Almost always, my first question when I was on various college tours was about their study abroad program. I was very impressed by IU’s Office of Overseas Study and all of the opportunities that were available to IU students. The unlimited opportunities with Overseas Study Office was one of the reasons why I chose to come to Indiana University.

duomo

The Duomo

At first, the process of picking a program can be very daunting- so many amazing places to chose from!  With over 100 programs that are offered through the Office of Overseas Study, you can go anywhere from Australia, Ireland, Ecuador, Israel, or South Africa. Don’t worry, the process of finding the perfect program for you become easy when using the searching filters. I personally wanted to do an IU program so I would be able to get academic credit while I was abroad. Another option is to go through a non-IU program. Some things to consider regarding a non-IU program include:

  • Transfer credit
  • Grades not calculated in GPA
  • Financial aid applicability

Click here to find all of this information and more on the Overseas Study website.

For me personally, I have been strategically taking certain classes for my major so I would be able to study abroad anywhere to fulfill A&H requirements. Since I was not limited on by what certain classes I would need to take while abroad, I used the filter and narrowed down my choices by focusing on programs offered in Europe.

I have already been lucky enough to visit various countries in Europe. I traveled to Italy with my family and traveled to France, Germany, and Switzerland with a friend my senior year of high school. I fell in love with exploring new cities and countries through out those trips. There was a city in particular that I was enamored by and it was the mesmerizing Florence, Italy. I was enchanted with the history, lifestyle, and culture of Italy. I cannot wait to be able to experience Italy on a deeper level through historic landmarks, works of art, learning more about Italy’s history, and of course the food! I can’t imagine how magical it will be to walk past the Duomo in Florence everyday. I look forward to getting to learning and understanding more about what it means to be a true Florentinian!

I am so thankful for this opportunity to study abroad to not only experience a new culture, but to also incorporate my passion of health. I am very interested in global health and I am fascinated to see how health is addressed in Italy for a substantial amount of time. My major at IU is Community Health and being able to see how the community of Florence functions would be a once in a lifetime opportunity.  I have a passion for people and health and I believe this experience will be a great beginning to my future in health.

Here we go, on to another amazing adventure to my new home in the spring: Florence, Italy. I am so grateful to live out my dream of studying abroad and I can’t wait to see what next semester brings!

“We travel, some of us forever, to seek other places, other lives, other souls.” – Anais Nin

sAlly Hunt is a junior from Zionsville, IN currently completing her degree in Community Health. She’s a lover of animals, traveling, and all things Beyonce. Even when life throws her curve balls, she’s grateful to be in the game!

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