Kathryn Byron is an Ambassador who studied abroad in India
Why did you choose to study abroad and how did you decide on this program?
I wanted to go somewhere that was completely different from anywhere that I have ever been. I knew that India was not a place that I would be able to travel to on my own and I also wanted to learn about a cultural completely different from any I have encountered. The service learning aspect of this program was also a big factor in my decision to join the India program.
Briefly describe a specific cultural experience you had on your trip that made a lasting impression.
During my time in India I was able to live with a host family. Being a part of their everyday life made such a big impression on how I viewed the Indian culture. I learned more about India in my dinner conversations with my host father then any book could teach me. I also made lasting relationships with my family and students from St. Xavier's College that will last a lifetime.
Describe your overall study abroad experience.
While in India I was able to challenge myself every day, whether it be taking a new mode of transportation to school, showering with a bucket, or working with students at my service learning site. . Overall, India allowed to push myself both physically and mentally and learned more about a world completely different from my own than I could ever imagine.
Based on your experiences abroad, what are some of the benefits of spending a semester abroad? How has studying abroad contributed to your personal, academic, and professional development?
While abroad I was able to work at Loreto day school tutoring students of all ages in English and math. Since I am going to be an elementary education teacher this directly correlated to my profession as a teacher. I also learned a lot about globalization and am now more aware of the development of not only the country where I studied but the world as a whole.
What advice can you offer for CSB/SJU students who are considering or planning to study abroad?
The opportunity to study abroad at CSB/SJU is one that you will most likely never again receive in your lifetime. Being able to live in a different country for five months allows you to broaden your horizons, push yourself, build relationships, learn a ton and have fun while doing it!
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