The end of this study abroad experience was extremely bittersweet. On one hand, I was finally going home to see all my friends and family and spend time with them again. On the other hand, I was splitting up from the family we had formed in Tianjin. This semester long trip was extremely life changing. I was able to grow as an independent person, make strong friendships with people I had never met before in my life, and experienced things in different places that people can only dream about doing. From the classroom to our travels, every little moment was new as well as enlightening and I have FIU and TUC to thank for this.
I’m not going to lie, this trip was extremely challenging for me. The living standards were different, the culture was different, the people were different. I can barely find a similarity between Miami and Tianjin. However, I can definitely say that all this strengthened me and it is a time I’m never going to forget.
This experience also sparked a love for travel in me. Traveling makes you more humble and allows you to see that not everyone lives like you do, and you should always appreciate what you have. I was also able to engage with students from China, and directly ask them any questions I had about their customs and traditions, which was something I was looking forward to in this trip.
Overall, I’d definitely recommend going on this journey. Apart from all that I’ve mentioned, this study abroad has given me an experience that will help with my future career. I now feel that I have the skill to be willing to understand others and see everything with an open mind. Not all people are the same, which means not all businesses will be carried the same way. This trip has given me the ability to adapt to a changing atmosphere, which in a changing world will be extremely useful to have. So if you have the chance, go on this study abroad journey, and continue to travel after that!