Kendria Ruhland is an Ambassador who studied abroad in Greco-Roman
Why did you choose to study abroad and how did you decide on this program?
I have always wanted to to go to Greece. The fact that I was able to apply to a program where I get to go to Greece AND Italy was a major bonus. I also have always had a slight interest in history and since all the classes were about the history of the countries it was a perfect bonus. The classes offered for the Greco-Roman trip were ones that I needed to have in order to graduate. I also have taken a lot of science classes at school and it was nice to take a break from all the sciencey stuff.
Briefly describe a specific cultural experience you had on your trip that made a lasting impression.
I absolutely loved the food while I was abroad. Everything is so fresh and healthy. In Athens, there would be Farmer's Market every week that we could go to and just get a ton of fresh fruit and veggies for really cheap. Since being back, I've been trying to eat more fruits and veggies. The grapes there are also amazing.
Describe your overall study abroad experience.
I honestly don't know how to describe being abroad. It was definitely the best experience I have ever had in my life and I would strongly encourage everyone to go. You make so many new friends and you see things that you never would have thought you would see. I've gained more independence and confidence from being abroad because I was forced to do things that I wouldn't normally do in America.
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?
Living in two different countries for an extended period of time lets you discover what it is like to be a foreigner. You find out that learning another language is difficult and that it takes time to adjust. I learned more about myself and other people. Before going abroad, I was kind of a follower of a group, but now I'm not afraid to do my own thing instead of going with the group. I know that I will still enjoy myself no matter what I decide.
What advice can you offer for CSB|SJU students who are considering or planning to study abroad?
Studying abroad is one of the best choices you can make. It's an excuse to have the time of your life. There are not many other chances in life to live in a foreign country. Take thousands of pictures, take chances, and spend money you don't have; you won't regret anything.