“International students.” The first thing that comes to peoples minds when they hear those words is a funny accent and a different culture. Yes, we are different, but it’s actually way beyond that. In my experience, being an international student has been a journey full of challenges and obstacles that have helped me grow as a person. The person I have always wished to become. The first challenge that foreign students have to accomplish is to accept, with a good attitude, the fact that they are actually different and that they are the ones who need to adjust to a new culture. Sometimes, students think that because they are coming from abroad, the natives have to do all the work. This is absolutely not true. It’s work for both parties. Locals and foreign students should always be pleased of having the opportunity to learn and experience different and unique moments from and with each other.
It’s really important to understand that being part of an underrepresented group can be a double-edged sword. In my case, as a Bolivian and being part of the Latin-American group, it has been really difficult to not stick with my peers and speak my native language. Study abroad is a great opportunity for students because they are able to grow and mature as a person. I have to mention, that I really enjoy the experience and it has changed me in many ways. I learned a lot about the English culture and let me tell you that there is no better way to learn about a culture than being able to actually live there. I made the decision to study abroad in London because I knew I was going to live something completely different. In the beginning, it was difficult because I was by myself and I didn’t know anyone from the program. However, I realized that almost all the students were in my same position, so I meet new people. FIE London is an excellent program that offers students the chance to be able to study in London and they provide housing, classes, internships, and fun activities that help students integrate with the culture. Their service is excellent and they are always willing to help. So, if you are a student and your plan is to study abroad in London I fully recommend. I traveled to many places and I think that London is a good place to have that experience. The city is organized and the people are very polite. Also, London is an international city, so I was able to learn about other culture as well.