A semester or year abroad is one of the greatest opportunities offered to students. It presents students with a chance to work on their foreign language skills, visit places they’ve only read about in books and meet people who view the world in very different ways. For most students, it is an extremely rich and rewarding experience. This does not mean, however, that all things will be positive or that all the people a student meets will be wonderful and welcoming. There will be times when students have to motivate themselves, both socially and academically.

When first arriving abroad, it helps to be determined about taking advantage of the opportunities that living abroad provides. Students should go out of their way to get involved, to meet new people, and to avoid spending all of their time with others from the U.S.