Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Guest Blogger - Jay Tan

I am Jay Tan, currently a third year in the College. I am majoring in Economics and Psychology. This winter quarter, I am going to participate in the Barcelona Study Abroad Program. I applied to the program early this year and I am glad that I was selected.

Applying for University of Chicago Study Abroad program has always been something on the top of “must-do” list. Why? It is because University of Chicago’s Study Abroad program is very well structured and the civilization programs fulfill 3 quarters of the core requirement in just one quarter. Besides that, Barcelona is a city that has been constantly attracting my attention due to its richness in culture and the phenomenal architectures of the city. The extremely cold winter in Chicago has also prompted me to apply for a study program during winter. All these lead to why I put Barcelona as my first choice when I applied for the program.

One might think that participating in these programs can be very costly. However, this perception is not entirely true. Many offices in the University give out academic grants to aid the successful applicants – Office of Multicultural Student Affairs (OMSA) being one of them. I learn about this academic grant on the OMSA’s website and decided to try my luck by applying for this grant. And yes, I was graciously awarded a good amount to lighten the cost of the program. Besides that, if you are receiving any kind of financial aid from the University, the aid will still apply despite you going abroad. Thus, Study Abroad Program is not always a very expensive thing to do.

All my friends who took part in these programs never regretted. Some even commented that the quarter where they joined the program is probably going to be their most enjoyable quarter in their entire 4 years of University life. The onsite visits made them understand the text and the culture of a civilization much better. Besides studying, they are also exposed to new languages and of course, enjoying the different kind of delicacies that each country can offer.

Thus, I would also strongly recommend all students in the University to grab this excellent opportunity to apply for the Study Abroad Program. Although my program will only be conducted in Winter quarter, I am sure that I will not regret it and I will have an incredible experience there.

Please continue read this blog as I will post my experiences about my study abroad program when I am in Barcelona next quarter!