Challenges of studying abroad: Adrian Iu’s experience in Spain

Elin Johnson, Staff writer

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Adrian Iu is a junior, double majoring in literature and Spanish with a minor in gender studies. Iu is spending the semester studying in Alicante, Spain. Alicante is along the Spanish coast bordering the Mediterranean Sea.

Iu wanted to study abroad in a Spanish-speaking country to improve his grasp on the language as well as his intercultural abilities. He chose Spain for its rich history and culture.

He is living with a host family while in Spain. Iu says it is nice to have home-cooked meals and not have to do his own laundry every weekend. However he does say that “it does feel uncomfortable to communicate your needs and preferences.”

Iu’s Mondays and Fridays are open, which means he can use that long weekend to travel and take in the sights.

According to his blog, those travels have taken him to France, Ireland and the Netherlands, to name a few.

Studying abroad is not all fun and no work. During the week Iu partakes in internships and classes. In the morning, Iu partakes in his internship in events management. He attends classes in the afternoons.

“The challenge is immersing myself to a completely different lifestyle because I needed to get used to the eating schedule, the transportation, meeting new friends, and attending classes,” Iu said.

Surviving this experience has been the major success for Iu. He also said that his ability to adapt to another culture and to be patient surprised him.

His experiences abroad have allowed him to develop these skills.

“I think I have allowed myself to think more and accept people from various backgrounds, especially when I really want to fully comprehend what others are saying.”

You can follow Iu on his blog https://koalatyadventures.wordpress.com.