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Oh, The Places You'll Go: Carlson Study Abroad

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"You have a brains in your head, feet in your shoes  You can steer yourself any direction you choose. You're on your own. And you know what you know. And YOU are the one who'll decide where to go..."

Dr. Suess' quote always makes me think of how fantastic the opportunity for an international experience is for Carlson students. Below are some of the experiences that my friends and I have had.
  • Summer after freshman year spent 3-week program in Mexico studying intermediate spanished followed by a 6-week program in Spain studying linguistics and art.
  • A semester during junior year spent in Vienna, Austria with weekend trips all around various countries in Europe.
  • A semester during sophomore yearspent in Ecuador over sophomore year
  • A semester during junior year spent in Kenya. Camped under the stars on "pride rock" from the Lion King.
  • 2 weeks in Cape Town, South Africa during winter break of junior year

That last one was me! I got to see the African sun set from the top of Table Mountain, pet a cheetah, stand eye-to-beak with an ostrich, see penguins lounging on a beach, and experience the bounty of the beautiful wineries the western cape. Any study abroad experience whether 2 weeks long or 1 year long can be an incredible one. Here are some things to start thinking about:
  • How would you fit it into your schedule? Summer after freshman year is an awesome option. Many of your peers will take a semester during their junior years. Students who want to pursue multiple majors or degrees may find themselves strapped for time, and that a winter break program or a two-week program in May could be best.
  • Do you want to finish a Carlson requirement or study something totally unique? For example, many of my friends took a required Accounting course that had a two-week winter break trip to Argentina, or a Human Resources class that takes a two-week May trip to Australia.
  • What might be the cost of this program? My friends who went to Europe definitely spent a bit more than they would have for a semester at the U of M, but my friend who went to Kenya spent far less than she would have for a normal semester. My South Africa program was an extra 5K or so on top of whatever tuition I was paying.
    • Special note: Carlson offers tons of scholarships and financial aid for study abroad! The school will find a way to make it possible for you to complete this requirement!

And finally, the most important question:
Where do you want to go? When you combine the U of M's Learning Abroad Center with Carlson's Global Institute, you are looking at options of over 300 programs from 70 countries. No choice is a bad choice!

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