Over winter break I went to Dubai, in the United Arab Emirates on a Study Abroad excursion through the University of Minnesota.
It was a three week trip that allowed us to go with a University of Minnesota professor and about twenty-four other students. My trip focused on the marketing aspect of Dubai and the rapid growth and expansion that the Emirate has been experiencing lately.
It was a really neat experience, and one of my goals that I finally accomplished before I graduate in the spring. I think that the program was really a nice fit for me because it allowed me to go to the region of the Middle East, which is my minor within the College of Liberal Arts, and it was with a smaller group of other Minnesota students, so we were able to have a lot of individual attention and experiential learning.
Tomorrow, we will be having a reunion type gathering with the students and professor from the trip. I am excited to see everyone again, and I think that it is really a testament to the relationships that you have build with other students and faculty on campus.
The best part of the trip was looking at the differences in perspectives not only within the Emirate with my own, but also between the other students within the group. Having a combination of students from different majors and backgrounds definitely brought in an element of discussion that was very interesting for the trip. The first part of the trip was spent on more cultural learning, and the second part was more business focused. I think that seeing both sides of the UAE was very educational, and I was very happy to be coming from a liberal arts perspective while meeting with the different businesses and companies.
I would definitely recommend studying abroad if you are at all interested. I know that I am very glad that I was able to make it work. The University of Minnesota offers lots of study abroad options in many different countries with many different lengths of the programs. I know I benefited from the variety of programs, making it possible for me to study abroad in my senior year!