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You know the phrase: ‘be careful what you wish for’? Well, on my study abroad program I definitely learned that it’s one very true statement. Before coming to Berlin when people asked me why I chose Berlin and why I decided to go study abroad, I always answered the same thing: I want to grow, I want to learn, I don’t want to be dependent on my parents, I want to not live somewhere where I am so incredibly comfortable, and most importantly, I want to get out of my comfort zone.

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Fourteen Grade 10, 11, and 12 students from Fraser Academy in Vancouver recently returned from a fantastic trip to Japan and South Korea. Over the 13 days, students were immersed in a wealth of cultural and social experiences, exposed to global perspectives and contexts, and given the opportunity to explore historical locations and artifacts. Various Japanese Buddhist temples and Shinto shrines were visited, including Sensouji Temple and Meiji Shrine in Tokyo, as well as Sanjusangendo, Kyomizudera Temple, and Fushimi Inari Shrine in Kyoto.

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On March 12, 11 students, one mom and two teacher chaperones from Ballenas Secondary School in Parksville flew from Nanaimo to Vancouver to Frankfurt to Athens, Greece for a 12 day tour with EF. We visited Athens, Delphi, Olympia, Epidauros, Mycenae, Nafplio, Cape Sunio. We took a day cruise in the Saronic Gulf and visited Hydra ( a beautiful island where there are no cars – if you want to go somewhere, you can go by boat, by foot or by donkey), Poros and Aegina.

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By Megan Bondurant

In a word, our trip was unbelizable. We were nine Grade 11 and 12 students from Edward Milne Community School (EMCS) traveling with our two Biology teachers to a crazy, wonderful, Central American country on a packed 8 day tour.

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By Susan Seto

Yes, you’ve made it! You’ve been accepted to study abroad. You’re dancing around in your kitchen while reading your acceptance letter out loud. It’s an incredible feeling, isn’t it?

Just as the adrenaline rush dies down, you realize this isn’t going to be cheap. However, don’t let this discourage you. With careful planning and preparation, you will be able to pursue your dream to go abroad.

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In October 2014, several BC students took a break from their studies and flew to Taiwan to represent Canada in The Seminar on Youth Public Participation and International Humanitarianism in the Age of Globalization. This seminar was a hub for students around the globe to come together and share their experiences in international affairs and sustainable volunteerism. Some of the countries represented in the conference were the Dominican Republic, Ireland, New Zealand, Israel, South Korea, Japan, and Taiwan.

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I’ll be embarking on my journey overseas in less than a month now, and things are starting to feel a lot more real. I’ve been planning for this exchange for over six months now, and these plans are all finally coming to fruition.

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By Nadine Wilk

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By Susan Seto

If you were to tell me five years ago that I would be living out of a suitcase for a year, I would think you were crazy. Last year, I decided to take a leap of faith to pursue my passion to go abroad.  It was a bold move to leave my career, apartment, and family and friends in Vancouver for the unfamiliar. Looking back, it was by far the best thing I did for myself in terms of personal and professional growth.

Category: Student Blog

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