Opportunities for exchange
Tubing in caves, rappelling down cliffs, jumping into canyons, and snowboarding in plus degree weather; just another hard day at work while on my New Zealand exchange. Oh yes, there were classes somewhere in-between too.
I was lucky enough to embark on a study abroad exchange this past semester in not only the adventure capital of the world, but one of the most beautiful places Iíve ever set foot on.
While it was an incredible experience, New Zealand is just one of the 45 exchange institutions available to MRU students. Whether studying business in Hong Kong or learning about child studies on the coast of Australia, the exchange possibilities are endless.
The thought of doing a semester abroad can be quite exciting, but it also brings with it questions about host countries, having to meet new people, and possibly learning a new language.
Students should be sure to attend a study abroad information session before applying to ensure they have a thorough understanding of the exchange process, the application process, deadlines, etc., said Trinda Guillet, one of MRU’s international exchange coordinators.
Once youíve attended a session, make sure to pick up an application package and fill out/attach everything necessary. Guillet added, “Students putting in their applications for exchange should remember to research their host locations and institutions thoroughly to ensure it is a good match for their personal study abroad goals. The more informed you are, the better decision you can make.”
For me, New Zealand meant picking up my life and moving 12,000 kilometers away from home, friends and family for five months.
While the first few weeks were tough, struggling to find a place to live, learning how to get around a brand new city, figuring out a new school, and dealing with lots and lots of rain, but things started to fall into place and before no time, I was housed, starting school, and had bought an umbrella.
As time went on, I found myself getting more and more attached to the rolling, sheep-covered hills and the crazy kiwi accent.
Some of my most memorable experiences include tramping and tubing through a glowworm cave, jumping off a cliff into a canyon, rolling down a hill in a giant plastic ball and just exploring the beauty of the country with newfound friends.
The school aspect of the exchange can be difficult at times, especially if youíre learning in a new language. My best advice is to take all the help offered to you and never be afraid to ask for help.
The application deadline for exchanges in the spring 2010, fall 2010 or winter
2011 semesters are due by 4:30 p.m. on Feb. 16.
This was the experience of a lifetime for me, and I would challenge anyone even remotely interested to go for it! Attend an information session today and get the ball rolling on your future exchange.
Study Abroad Information Sessions