Now that I’ve been home for a while, I wanted to share some comments on my experience and reflections on what I have learned. First seeing my family and friends again was wonderful! We all picked up right where we left off. I definitely appreciate the time I have with them a lot more now having been away for so long. I also appreciate home a lot more, not only because it had been such a long time, but also because at Lingnan I was lucky enough to meet some of the students who traveled to CMU for exchange in previous semesters, and who had visited other cities in Michigan including my home town of Midland. Hearing about my university and my home town from someone who chose to go there on exchange definitely changed my perspective! I love Midland and Mount Pleasant, but I had always thought of them as a little bit boring compared to places like Hong Kong. But now I can see the value and uniqueness of where I live a lot more than I did before. I always thought that I would move somewhere bigger and more exciting, but the experiences I had in Hong Kong have made me reconsider that. It was an incredible place to visit and I am so glad that I went, but it made me appreciate what I left and realize that while I will always love traveling, I will never want to permanently be so far from my family and my home.
Studying abroad was one of the best decisions I have ever made, and it has definitely changed me for the better! I will never forget the experiences I had in Hong Kong or the friends that I made. I feel so much more confident now having successfully traveled to another country and lived there on my own. Encountering situations that were so new to me and finding ways to deal with them has helped me a lot when it comes to being assertive and taking initiative in unfamiliar settings. I also think that meeting local students and other exchange students from all over the world, with a wide variety of backgrounds and ideas, has made me more open and understanding of different perspectives. Overall, I feel so lucky to have been given this opportunity, and would definitely recommend this program and studying abroad in general to students considering it.
Thanks for reading! <3