When thinking about the time I spent abroad, the first word that comes to mind is breathtaking. Each of the countries I had the chance to visit brought its own appeal. They were each so different, but so interesting at the same time. This experience will forever hold a special place in my heart. There will never be anything that can compare to the type of learning I was able to take part in throughout my time abroad.
England by far was my favorite place we went. I have spent my entire educational journey learning about people and places that are important to the world of psychology. England is one of the first places that comes to mind when thinking about the field I plan to work in in the future. Visiting Charles Darwin’s house and getting to see the gardens that inspired his field of work was almost like living in a dream. Being able to see the flower studies that he did in his greenhouse was so interesting.
The history side of London was not the only part that had me so in love with the city. I was amazed by how culturally diverse it was there. There are sections of the city that have been influenced by other countries all around the world. Being in London is like taking a trip around the world. From Italy to China, the reach of influence is so vast. I am from a small town, so being able to experience the different languages, foods, and religions was something that was really life changing for me. We happened to be staying in a section of the city that had a huge influence from China. They were celebrating the Chinese New Year during the time I was there. The lanterns decorating the streets, the bicycle taxis, and the overall atmosphere was such an adventure for me.
Germany was the next country I visited. I was nervous going in because the only information I had about the place came from what I had learned about World War II. For some reason my mind told me that people were still going to follow the same values that they had during the war, but this could not be any farther from the truth. We visited the concentration camp Dachau while there. It had been turned into an educational memorial to the people who had died there. It was bone chilling to be there, but it was an experience that I think every person should have. Our guides expressed how sorrowful the situation there was for the people who were forced to be there and how hard the German government has worked to take responsibility for their part in it. Seeing the way the German people handle their past really changed my view on the country. Its citizens truly want to make Germany a more friendly place.
Lastly, I went to Austria. Here I was able to see the home that once belonged to Sigmund Freud. He is one of the most influential figures in the history of psychology, and it was a life defining opportunity to be able to see where his work started. The entire country had an old historic feel that made me feel like I was on my way to visit Freud for a session in his home office. Our tour guide Alex was so nice and she made us feel at home even though we were a whole ocean away. I would love to be able to go back, and I am amazed by the entire experience.
Bailey Wilson (BS Psychology) spent Summer 2022 in England, Germany, and Austria as part of a faculty-led trip linked with a UTC course. Bailey had the following to say about study abroad, “I am the type of person who likes to learn through experience. There was no better way for me to do this than by traveling to the areas of the world that I have spent my entire educational journey learning about. This was truly an unforgettable opportunity that I will carry with me for the rest of my life.”
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