By Katie Artemas
When I made the decision to study abroad, it was pretty easy. I was sitting with my laptop over winter break, went on the Missouri School of Journalism study abroad website, clicked summer programs, saw Argentina and was done. As a Spanish minor, I wanted to study in a Spanish-speaking country, and Argentina was right in front of me. But life is not that simple.
At my first day of work in Buenos Aires, my co-workers asked me why I chose to study in Argentina, why Buenos Aires, and why I learned Spanish. These are things you think about, but are rarely asked to concretely explain. And I had to think about my answer—a lot actually. “That’s where the program was” was not only an unacceptable answer, but it would not be the truth. What drew me toward this program? Why didn’t I want to study Spanish in the country where it originated, Spain? Or desire to be in Mexico, America’s neighbor? There was clearly a lot of contemplation into the investment of living in another country for the summer; I just had to lay it out.
Hence, I encourage you to think about this while choosing a country to study abroad. Not where you want to see, but what do you want to learn? How will being in that specific country or region affect you as a person? Living in Argentina for one month has already exposed me to countless experiences that have improved my education, and I wish the same to anyone who desires to study abroad.