“I want to see mountains Gandalf, mountains!”
First and foremost I would like to introduce myself, my name is Ailie and I attend Trinity University in San Antonio, Tx where I am an Engineering Science major and I am from Houston, Texas originally! So tomorrow I set out for New Zealand, and I couldn’t be more excited and/or terrified. It has been a long wait up until this point filled with a lot of emotions ranging from ecstatic to me questioning why I ever chose to go abroad in the first place. As far as I’m concerned this is all normal. A lot of people have asked me why I chose New Zealand and although I am a self-proclaimed Lord of the Rings and Flight of the Conchords fan, I did not chose New Zealand merely for these reasons. Honestly I chose New Zealand because it fit with my engineering curriculum. The fact that I am now going to be travelling to the homeland of LOTR and Flight of the Conchords is just a huge bonus. So far I have actually learned a lot about going abroad, mainly about baggage allowance, haha. I have to admit that I wasn’t expecting so many emotions, least of all the anxiety I felt when all of my friends went back to school and I was not. As I said before, this is normal. Despite the emotional roller coaster I have been on, packing went fairly easy because I made lists of things I wanted to take and kept in mind that everything I wanted to take wouldn’t necessairly go with me. So that’s my advice to any future travel abroad students..make a list! Or make multiple. It will help you tremendously! Also listen to your advisors, they know so much and are so willing to help! My final piece of advice is do not hesitate to ask questions! I can’t tell you how many times I e-mailed my program advisor at IFSA about all the things I was worried about or didn’t understand. I always receieved timely and extremely helpful e-mails addressing anything and everything I was worried about. My final thoughts about going abroad is that this is going to be one of the biggest adventures of my life and I am unbelievably excited and I can’t wait to share it with people. In other words, welcome to the adventure!