Scholarship Winner Blog Entry

We are proud that we have two scholarship winners and a strong runner-up that will be joining us this summer! We will be posting all three entries on three different days! Here is one of the three scholarship entries, written by Natalie from Canada! 


There are so many benefits to studying abroad, which I have had the pleasure of experiencing first hand and hope to continue to take part in such a unique experience. Last summer I spent a month in Nice, France with a host family in hopes of improving my French and experiencing a new culture. My trip did just that and more. My French improved drastically, I eventually became comfortable in a foreign environment with people I had just met and I was completely immersed in a very fascinating culture.

This was my first trip abroad without my family, so I was not really sure what to expect and was a little nervous. However, after about a week into my trip, I became completely comfortable with my friendly host family and really started picking up on new French words and phrases that I had not learned in school. To me, my eight years of taking French prior to this trip could not measure to actually living in the culture and language that I had heard about in school. While I had learned grammar in school and written French, this opportunity allowed for me to learn what real French people actually say in everyday lives, which I believe made all the difference in my French improving.

Spending a long period of time in a new culture is sure NataliePhoto2Cheese  to
give you a whole new outlook on how different your culture is. While I have travelled a lot with my family before this exchange trip I had not truly been able to be immersed in any culture, like I had when I lived with my host family. When I first arrived, I greeted my family by hugging them not knowing that everyone there kisses on both cheeks, which I soon mastered after meeting many new people. I also noted that they start their days much later than North-Americans do and have dinners (always with bread, cheese and tapenade) much later as well. While their culture was hard to get used to at first, I very quickly got comfortable with their routine and was able to appreciate a different culture.Studying abroad is an amazing opportunity to improve a language, get fully immersed into a culture and to simply become a better-rounded individual. I believe that everyone should experience studying abroad if they have the chance.

Wonderful blog post Natalie! We can’t wait to see more posts from you this summer! 


  1. i have always wanted to study abroad. I am older now but it is a regret i have. Congrats on your blog!

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