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By: Sam Rae Harriss, University of Victoria, winner of the Spring 2022 BC Study Abroad: Stories from Abroad Scholarship

Study Abroad Destination: Netherlands

Studying abroad creates so many new opportunities for exploring the world and its languages, cultures, and people, offering a great challenge but also great rewards. While when preparing for my exchange semester in the Netherlands I was beyond excited to meet new people and make new friends, and I also knew that I wanted to use this opportunity to take on some smaller solo trips of my own, too, as a challenge to myself. 

Solo travelling is amazing in its ability to help you grow and learn more about yourself but can also be very difficult. When I decided to take advantag...

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By: Sam Rae Harriss, University of Victoria, winner of the Spring 2022 BC Study Abroad: Stories from Abroad Scholarship

Study Abroad Destination: Netherlands

I began my undergraduate university degree back in 2019, knowing that an exchange abroad was something I definitely wanted to do at some point in the coming years. Back in high school, I was lucky enough to participate in a two-week short-term exchange to Germany, an experience that made a huge impression on me. As I mapped out my degree, I decided I would apply for an exchange semester in my third year of school– until the COVID-19 pandemic hit.

Changing the nature of travel in a heartbeat, the pandemic abruptly halted most international travel opportunities for almost...

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By: Anna Hawboldt, British Columbia Institute of Technology, winner of the Spring 2022 BC Study Abroad: Stories from Abroad Scholarship

Study Abroad Destination: Austria

Vienna is a city mixed with calmness and liveliness. During the days, the cars, bikes and trams move quickly throughout the city. Simultaneously people will be enjoying their coffees at a street side café with no intent on leaving soon. 

As the night falls, the restaurants prepare for their evening rush and the bars down by the canal open their stalls. The roads, bike lanes and sidewalks stay busy as people make their way to meet their family and friends.

As you move down to the canals you will pass people sitting on the edge. Their feet overhanging the water as they l...

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By: Stephanie Wong, University of Victoria, winner of the Fall 2021 BC Study Abroad: Stories from Abroad Scholarship

Study Abroad Destination: Reykjavik, Iceland

In the blink of an eye, my time at the University of Iceland and my life in Reykjavik came to an end. The last week of classes was at the end of November, and the exam period started in the beginning of December. As my friends, floormates and I began studying, it also marked the upcoming end of our semester abroad. The life we had built for ourselves over the past 4 months would have to wrap up, even though it felt like we just arrived the day before. Looking back, my semester abroad was unforgettable, and I will never forget the people I had the opportunity to meet and spend time with. I a...

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By: Stephanie Wong, University of Victoria, winner of the Fall 2021 BC Study Abroad: Stories from Abroad Scholarship

Study Abroad Destination: Reykjavik, Iceland

One of the reasons I wanted to study abroad was to create a global network and to interact with people from around the world. I was so pleasantly surprised with the social interactions I got to experience while living abroad. It’s always a bit cliché to say “I love meeting new people” but for me, it’s the diehard truth.

Two days after I arrived in Reykjavik, the University of Iceland’s International Office hosted an International Student Festival at a famous local bar, Gaukurinn. Now from the moment I found out I was accepted for exchange and landed in Iceland, I personally didn’t kn...

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By: Stephanie Wong, University of Victoria, winner of the Fall 2021 BC Study Abroad: Stories from Abroad Scholarship

Study Abroad Destination: Reykjavik, Iceland

August 20th will forever hold a special place in my heart. This is the day I landed in Reykjavik, Iceland to start my 4-month exchange at the University of Iceland. It was one of the scariest things I’ve ever done in my life but one of the proudest moments I’ve ever experienced. I had always known I would do an academic exchange at some point of my post-secondary career, and I knew I had the independence and maturity to do so, but it was still a challenge moving to a different continent for 4 months knowing no one there and living on my own for the first time.

Having vacat...

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By: Sophia Berezowski, Capilano University, winner of the Fall 2021 BC Study Abroad: Stories from Abroad Scholarship

Study Abroad Destination: Aarhus, Denmark

I’ve been waiting to move out of the home that has raised me as the person I am today for what feels like forever. I don’t mean this in a scornful way; I love where I live very much and am forever grateful for the life I have cultivated in cozy Deep Cove.

There’s something that most young people, I think, yearn for though. It’s a desire so much bigger than ourselves to create our own life completely independently and see what we can find when the whole world opens up to us.

This is how I felt when I found out I was going abroad to Aarhus, and then again when I arrived. Quite fran...

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By: Maria Gabriela Rivera Monterrosa, University of Victoria, winner of the spring 2020 BC Study Abroad Scholarship

Study Abroad Destination: France

As someone who grew up dreaming of living in Europe for at least a semester, I was sure that if given the opportunity I’d definitely pick a major city–like Paris, Milan or London. To everyone’s surprise, when the opportunity arrived and I had to pick a city to go on exchange in, I ended up picking a small French city over Paris.

The city I picked is called Reims: a city that is just a short forty-five minute train ride from Paris with a population of fewer than three-hundred thousand people. Famous for being home to some of the most famous champagne houses in the world and its historical importan...

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By: Georgia Neil Joy Rodgers, North Island College, winner of the spring 2020 BC Study Abroad Scholarship

Study Abroad Destination: Germany

The ending to my study abroad was not the one that I was expecting, I had plans to backpack through Europe until I had to go back to school in September. I was called home by my school mid-March due to Covid-19 which was very difficult for me to come to terms with. It is always very difficult when something that is so good comes to an end, especially unexpectedly and in a scary way. I consider myself incredibly lucky because I had the most amazing time during my three months in Germany, friends to lean on who were going through the same thing, and an incredibly supportive host and home school.

While these...

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By: Georgia Neil Joy Rodgers, North Island College, winner of the spring 2020 BC Study Abroad Scholarship

Study Abroad Destination: Germany

I had always heard how inexpensive it is to travel within Europe, but I was not expecting to spend 50 euros on flights and accommodation for a 3-night weekend trip to Austria! My schedule at SRH Heidelberg was very travel permitting because the international office at the German University does not allow exchange students to be overwhelmed with schoolwork so that they can focus on enjoying their time exploring. My studies were one course at a time in 5-week blocks. So, I would have a couple 4-hour lectures per week, then I was free to do whatever I wanted with my spare time. So, I travelled! I went to Strasbourg...

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