Eastern Michigan University offers several opportunities for students to experience new cultures through our study abroad programs. For many students, coming to college and leaving their hometown for the first time is a hurdle in itself, so studying abroad can be quite scary and overwhelming.
TiTyana Garder, a student worker in the HSC knows firsthand why you need to study abroad despite your fears and concerns. During spring break, she had the opportunity to travel to Rome for a week and here is what she had to say about her experience:
Where did you travel? I traveled to Rome and Florence, Italy.
What study abroad program did you sign up for and were you required to take a class? The class is called HRM 385 Global Hospitality Management. I had two class meetings before departure, do research on a specific topic and present, journal every night during my trip, and we have a final class meeting after the trip.
How did this trip connect to your major: This is an elective class that I could take for my major. My major is hotel and restaurant management, and I need 12 elective courses to fulfill the elective requirement.
How were you able to meet the financial requirements: For the costs, my scholarship was able to cover the tuition portion. I have the education first opportunity scholarship. My dad helped pay for the rest of my expenses for the trip.
Why do you believe it’s important to travel abroad
during your time in college? It is important to travel abroad during college because there is so much more out there. There are different cultures all over the planet, and I think it’s great to explore those cultures and have that culture shock. It teaches you about what is going on in the world and it teaches you a lot about yourself. In addition, networking is huge when studying abroad. Making these connections now can greatly impact your future career in a positive way. Being in Italy has made me consider doing an internship in Europe after I graduate, which can help career really take off.
What were some of the most memorable highlights from your trip? One of the highlights of my trip was being able to see so many historic places like the Vatican, the trevi fountain, the coliseum, etc. There was absolutely beautiful, and it’s amazing to me that after thousands and thousands of years,
these places still look amazing. It makes you really think about the time and care it took to build these places and how we don’t see that anymore in today’s society. It was also very emotional for me because I was standing on history. I could touch history and take a picture with history. When I used to see these places in my history book, I never cared about them. But after being there, I have a new appreciation for these things and I learned so many facts about the ancient roman empire.
What advice would you give to students who are unsure about traveling abroad? Some advice I would give to students who are unsure about traveling abroad: DO IT!!! It will change your life and give you a new perspective on things. You’ll make new friends, you’ll learn new things about the world and yourself, and you’ll get to have new experiences that you’ve never had and will make you a better person.
Do you plan to go on more study abroad trips? If so, where? YES, I definitely plan to go another study abroad trip! I plan on going to London and Paris in 1 year for the next HRM Global Hospitality class. It’s so far away, but I’m already excited to go!