2017 Study Abroad Essay 1 Jessi Moore

As the beginning of this trip gets underway the expectations I have for studying abroad in Poland are also the same things that raise some concern. While doing research about the cities we will be visiting and talking to people that I know that have been to those places, my concern is traveling internationally and everything thing that comes with being in a different country, especially with the things that have been going on around the world. With that being said I also know what kinds of things to expect because of the research I have done and the people I have talked to. Traveling internationally is a very broad topic, things like culture, food, history, and language are all things I think about when I think of traveling abroad.

First, culture is the learned behavior of people in a certain area, things like religion, social habits, music, and geographic location are things that influence a person’s culture. My expectations for the culture of the people in Poland has been mostly formed by my friends and professors that have been here. From what I have been told about the polish I fully expect for the people to be very welcoming, generous, and very eager to learn about my culture as I am to learn about theirs. My concerns are making sure I don’t say something or do something that is going to offend anyone, some of those things might include hand gestures, and things as simple as smiling at someone when you pass on the street. Those things are so normal in our culture that I don’t think twice about it when I’m at home but being in a different country you have to be aware of how they do things in their country.

Third is the food and while this is defiantly apart of someone’s culture it’s a bigger concern of mine because of me being such a picky eater. First I completely expect for there to be different types of foods because we are in a different country and everywhere all around the world there are unique foods to that area. My concern for this is that, like I mentioned, I am a picky eater but I hope to find foods here that I am willing to try because I would really like to experience Poland to my fullest ability.

Second, history is something that every single child in the world is taught whether it’s in a classroom or by the adults in your life at, some point you learn about history. My expectations for the history of Poland has all come from history class I have taken and things I have researched on my own. I expect for there to be so much rich history because of everything that this country has gone through, and I fully expect for the people to be so proud of their rich history and want to share it with us. My concern is that we will mostly focus on certain time periods and I would like to get to learn about a wide range of polish history.

Lastly, the language barrier is something that I automatically expect from being is a foreign country. Things like reading street signs, ordering food, shopping and so much more is going to be tougher because we don’t speak their language. My concern for this is that with us being foreigners we have more of a target on our backs for things like scams, thefts, and even bigger problems like kidnappings. These fears that I have mostly stem from things I have heard from family members growing up.

Tying everything together I would say overall I am very excited for this trip and my expectations by for outweigh my concerns. I am looking forward to getting to experience the polish culture, their rich history and trying their unique food. I’m also looking forward to getting to make new friends with the other girls on this trip and with those we meet along the way.


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