By Jasmine Casey Lee （李可心）
With the growing trend of globalization, short term study abroad known as “study tour” has become more and more popular among students of all ages. Alice Huang (黃玟瑄), who went to London for a summer when she was in high school, is here to share her “study tour” experience with us.
“My parents have always encouraged me to go abroad to broaden my worldview, but they were too busy to go with me,” said Huang. When she was 16, she was very shy and timid. She decided to go on a study tour where it would be ideal for a first time traveler with all details pre-arranged.
The experience of living and studying in a foreign land allowed Alice Huang to become more independent, self-reliant and confident as she learned to manage and live comfortably in an entirely different culture.
“During the tour, there was no one I could count on, therefore I was forced to learn to take care of myself. Yet, after that, I found myself more independent and had a great improvement in my social and other living skills,” said Huang.
Many people, especially Asian students, often found themselves unconfident of their English skill. Worrying that people may laugh at them, they tend to avoid any interaction with other foreign students. In the beginning, Huang was also like this. However, after seeing her roommate, an outgoing Chilean girl, Huang realized that those worries were absolutely unnecessary.
“Frankly speaking, my roommate’s English was no better than mine. But she was never afraid of talking to foreigners. Because of that, language gap was never an issue between her and me, and I also learned that when learning a language, just speak out loud!”
By speaking out loud, Alice Huang became a participant instead of a listener! Soon she broke people’s typical impressions toward most Asian students.
Last but not least, for those who wish to go on a “study tour,” she would suggest that they bring some Taiwanese products such as pineapple cakes and post cards as gifts, which would quickly diminish the gap between one and another.
Because of this “study-tour” experience, Alice has become a brave and independent girl. This year Alice Huang went on a two-month travel around Europe without parents.
As that old saying goes, “There’s no education like the lessons of traveling.”