What inspired you to study another campus? What drove you to seek change?
I come from a very small town in a very small state with limited opportunities. Just going to college in Philadelphia was a huge step for me, a new place, with new people, and new opportunities. Once I learned that I was able to study in Los Angeles, I jumped at the opening. I had never been to California, and I thought, what better place to study journalism than Los Angeles. I knew it would be a huge culture shock, but I was ready for a new scene.
Coming from a small school, just attending Chestnut Hill in Philadelphia was a big jump for me. Going to Los Angeles was an even bigger step but I had to step outside of my comfort zone. I had wanted to study abroad but due to financial reasons, I knew it wasn’t in the cards for me. However, this study away program was a bit more feasible and gave me a real opportunity to meet other people who live in a different culture, but in the same country. I wanted to experience something different, and so far I have.
What risks are you excited to take on your new campus?
Since I am a part of the softball team at Chestnut Hill, I do not have much free time to explore and go on adventures during the school year. However, being able to have a semester where I am just focusing on school, I have a little bit more free time to go and explore which I have done and plan to do more of. There are so many events and activities to attend in LA, so I’ve been given the opportunity to do so. Activities like Disneyland, exploring downtown LA, Universal Studios, hiking to the Hollywood sign, attending museums, seeing the stars, there is so much to do here and when I’m not writing a paper or working, I will be exploring as much as I can.
What advice would you give to other students considering participating in the Student Exchange Program?
I would tell them, this has to be something you really want to do. You have to be willing to get outside of your comfort zone and take the opportunities that are handed to you. Some people may never be able to experience this, so do it while you’re young. Travel somewhere where you know is outside of your norm, the more open you are, and the more excitement you’ll find will enter your life. Meet new people, explore new places, do something that makes you happy, you can find happiness anywhere, you just have to be open to it.