For one Valdosta State University (VSU) Senior, studying abroad was an opportunity to not only travel and learn about another culture, it was a life-changing adventure. Breanna Johnson is majoring in Communication, Intercultural Organizational Communication and plans to graduate in May of 2018.
“I always had an urge to travel to many places throughout my life. After my freshman year, I declared my minor in Spanish and decided to finish my upper-level Spanish courses abroad.” Initially, Breanna wanted to go to Spain for a semester however, found out that there was an opportunity in Costa Rica which was four weeks long and she would be able to complete her Spanish minor as well as earn her certification for Spanish professionals.
Although a very fun experience for Breanna she says that what she enjoyed most about the entire experience was the various excursions that she was able to attend every weekend. “Every weekend there was a different activity. One weekend where we did not have an already planned excursion, a couple of us decided to go zip lining and white water rafting. Zip lining in the jungle, while it was raining, would be my most memorable experience,” says Breanna.
As a whole Breanna enjoyed the wildlife and vegetation. She acknowledges how friendly everyone was, the question that people would always ask if she spoke English or Spanish which was nice so that they were able to assist her. When asked what advice she would give to students who are considering studying aboard she says, “If you are interested, you just need to do it. The only person that can push you to do something you are interested in is yourself. It may be scary at first but it all is a learning experience. Also study the country as far as languages goes, make sure that you tell your phone provider that you are going out of the country because I know how important your cell phone is.” Breanna says she has yet to meet a person that has regretted studying aboard.
She says it is important to look into scholarships if monetary capability is a concern. “Benjamin A Gilman Scholarship is what many people were able to receive for their trips. Also, ask for internal scholarships within your school.”
After graduation, Breanna plans to work as an Administrative Assistant in Human Resources. She is looking to become an Organization Development Specialist. After that, she hopes to attend graduate school and receive her masters in Industrial-Organizational Psychology. With all of that, Breanna says she has always inspired to travel to new places.
“I honestly just want to travel the world any chance I am granted with and also I have always been inspired to inform others of different cultures. I want to travel to New Zealand next, maybe Morocco. But currently I believe my next traveling plan that I will be able to conquer sooner than later is traveling to Canada or Mexico,” says Breanna.