Final Reflections

constantinoj90My time abroad is coming to an end. I have 4 days left in my beautiful city of Florence. I see myself crying multiple times this week. I cannot put into words how incredible my experience studying abroad has been. I have learned so much about myself and have grown immensely as a person. They say that studying abroad gives you confidence, and I couldn’t agree more with that statement. After facing multiple challenges in Europe, I feel like I can tackle any problem thrown my way when I return to the United States. I have become a more independent person. I have learned to travel on my own. I have learned to navigate my way throughout a city, even when the data and maps on my phone stopped working! I have made incredible friends from all across the United States. Some of my best friends I have made are from the University of Colorado Boulder, so I will definitely be visiting them in the fall. One motto I’ve lived by abroad is that if it won’t matter in five years, don’t let it bother you for more than five minutes. Don’t sweat the small stuff. Take in every moment. Get off your cell phone. Speak with locals. Sitting along the Arno River gazing at the Ponte Vecchio, watching the sunset at Piazzale Michelangelo, and hiking up to Fiesole for an overlook of the entire city are three moments that have made me realize how thankful I am to have gotten to see the world. I am so grateful to have received this scholarship to help fund my abroad experience because I learned very quickly upon my arrival here – it is not cheap. Although I am beyond excited to see my family, be in the same time zone as all of my friends, sleep in my own bed, and to get water for free at restaurants, I am truly dreading leaving Italy. This country and the city of Florence will forever have a piece of my heart. Arrivederci!