Sarah Hinderman is a Gustie in her junior year currently studying abroad in Italy. So far, her trip has been going very well and she is more than excited for the rest of it.
Hinderman said that she has always known that she wanted to study abroad.
“My mom actually lived in England for her entire senior year of high school and got really close with her host family. I’ve gone back with her a few times to visit and I just loved the experience of getting away from home and seeing the world from a different perspective,” Hinderman said.
Hinderman is lucky to visit two different countries during her trip. She will be studying in both Rome and London during the semester.
“I chose Rome because Italy was on the top of my bucket list of places to go…so much history, beautiful sites to see, and pasta and pizza to eat. And London because I’ve always loved England and I wanted to experience what going to school would be like. Plus, I get to extend my trip and stay with my mom’s host family for a month,” Hinderman said.
When she first arrived, she was “beyond excited, still a little jet lagged, but knew that this was going to be the trip of a lifetime”.
Hinderman says that her favorite experience of the trip so far has been visiting the city of Sofia, Bulgaria.
“My hostel was amazing, I met so many new people from all sorts of backgrounds, tried some Bulgarian food, learned about the history, and fell in love with the city,” Hinderman said.
Hinderman admits that a downside of studying abroad is missing all of her friends and family back home. She also wishes that she packed more American snacks that she can’t get in Italy. Despite these dilemmas, studying abroad has been a very positive experience for her.
When asked whether she misses being on campus, Hinderman replied: “Of course! I honestly just miss the atmosphere on campus. I miss seeing my friends every day, being over-involved in activities, and most importantly iced coffee from the courtyard café.”
When she gets home, she is excited to hug her parents, catch up with her friends, and give everyone their gifts.
Hinderman would definitely recommend studying abroad to any Gustavus student that is considering it. She believes that any chance to travel to a new place is a great way to expand your worldview.
“It’s terrifying, but it’s worth it. You’ll never grow as a person and experience all there is in this world if you don’t push yourself out of your comfort zone,”said Hinderman.
She is confident that studying abroad will have a very positive long-term impact on her life.
“I think I’m going to make so many memories on this trip that I’m never going to forget. Interacting with all these different cultures is urging me to be more empathetic and understanding when meeting new people or trying new things. It’s allowing me to get out of my comfort zone and see that there’s more to the world than St. Peter, Minnesota,” Hinderman said.