Study Abroad office kicks off 'Taste of Culture' series


Adding a new program series to its event lineup this semester, the Office of Study Abroad is introducing students to worldly flavors every week.

A Taste of Culture gives students who are interested in studying abroad a chance to talk with students who have gone to their country or area of interest, as well as provide an opportunity for students to sample cuisine from that area.

The program is featured every Monday throughout the spring semester, from 4-5 p.m. in Ronan 344, said Amber Schneider, assistant director of Study Abroad.

"We're always trying to find new ways to get the word out to students about studying abroad, and the many benefits there are," she said. "Plus, we know that students generally take advantage of free food when it's offered."

Food from the United Kingdom was featured on Jan. 20, followed by the Netherlands on Jan. 27. Dishes from Denmark are next on the menu on Monday, Feb. 3.

Recent graduate Brittany Hild studied abroad in the Netherlands in the fall of 2012, and was delighted to be asked to come share her experience with other students.

"Studying abroad is definitely a worthwhile experience, and it's the best time to go when you're in college and you don't have any other obligations like full-time employment or financial responsibilities," Hild said. "It really broadens horizons, and you learn things that you wouldn't be able to get anywhere else. It's an invaluable experience that I wouldn't trade for the world, and I think it changes you for the better, and helps you see the world in a new lens."

Schneider said studying abroad is an excellent opportunity that she would advise all students to consider.

"It broadens your horizons, definitely, and opens your eyes to different people and backgrounds," she said.

It is also a great opportunity for self discovery and development, Schneider said, for many students who return to Central Michigan University with a new-found confidence and self reliance.

But it's not just personal growth students stand to gain. Studying abroad can help students find a job, and add an excellent boost to a student's resume.

"Students nowadays are going out into a tough job market, and study abroad can help set them apart from other applicants," Schneider said. "Just by having that experience on your resume, you're already telling potential employers several things about yourself."

Studying abroad is a fun experience as well, Schneider added, and an opportunity to make life-long friends.

"I'm still in touch with many of the people I met when I studied abroad in college, so it's a great chance for life-long connections"


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