When Krista Baddour, a senior English major, visited the Office of Education Abroad for Walk-in Advising Hours during the beginning of her junior year she knew she wanted to study abroad, but she did not know where she wanted to go. “All I knew was that I wanted to go abroad somewhere because I wanted a different educational experience,” Krista said.
An OEA Peer Advisor spoke with Krista to find out her interests. They sorted through various OHIO programs, affiliate programs and outside organizations before discovering that Krista’s real interest was to study the Spanish language. “I had studied three years of Spanish in high school and a year at OHIO, but I really wanted to study the language in an actual Spanish-speaking country,” Krista said. After doing a good amount of research on her own, Krista narrowed her choices down to two OHIO programs: the Toledo, Spain program and the Merida, Mexico program.
Krista had already traveled to Spain during her senior year of high school. Plus, she was interested in visiting a non-traditional study abroad location which made Merida the perfect choice. “I finally chose the program to México because I knew several people who had previously gone and really enjoyed their experience.”
Finances also played an important part in Krista’s decision. Choosing a location like Latin America and sticking to a strict budget helped Krista to be able to travel almost every weekend to locations all throughout the country. “Also, there are a lot of scholarships available [for many programs] and ways to help fund your experience abroad so take advantage!”
Krista recommends students looking into this program and any other program start planning early. You never know if you will want to return to the country you studied in or go abroad again later in college. “This was one of my biggest regrets because I started thinking about this too late,” she said.
For more tips from Krista, visit the Office of Education Abroad during Walk-in Advising from 1pm-4pm Mon-Thurs. She currently serves as one of our helpful Peer Advisors.