We all know Arcadia is known for its study abroad program (and if you didn’t, you must be blind or oblivious to life itself). With 18 countries across the globe to choose from, it’s hard not to take the opportunity to live in a foreign country for a semester or two… or three or seven (hey—it could happen!).
I’ve always loved the idea of going abroad myself. Who wouldn’t want to meet people from different cultures and make global connections and friendships that could last a lifetime? This is the side to studying abroad that is mostly, if not always, talked about on campus, but there is another side to studying abroad—a side that is not advertised (for obvious reasons).
Let me just throw two things out there before I begin: (1) No, this is not me bashing the study abroad program in any way, shape, or form, because it is clear how prestigious and rewarding the program is, and (2) even as I sit here dropping mac and cheese all over my lap, this is not me complaining (believe it or not) about how difficult my life is. I’m simply looking at the topic from a different angle.
Earlier this month, two of my three roommates made a last-minute decision (and by “last-minute” I mean almost literally at the last minute) that they were going to be studying abroad in Dublin, Ireland, next semester. At first, I was excited for them… and then I realized they said next semester.
I was a little surprised after I let it sink in. I wouldn’t be seeing two of my best friends for almost five months. They’ll no longer be in the apartment every day. I’ll no longer be able to barge into their room, sprawl out on their beds, and complain to them about everything and anything that comes to mind. We’ll no longer be able to have discussions (serious discussions) about sending pitches to MTV for our own reality show (yes, everyone says that, but you have no idea).
When you get to know people more than you ever thought you would, it’s difficult to imagine them being gone for so long. Sure, five months doesn’t seem like much when all is said and done, but during that time, it won’t be easy.
It will definitely be strange for me and my other roommate, but we’re trying to look on the bright side—at least the kitchen will be clean.
In all seriousness, I am very happy for my two roommates. Going abroad is an eye-opening experience that teaches responsibility on its highest level. And I’m sure they’ll have a blast, mostly because Ireland is famous for… well, you know (just kidding!).
So, let the hunt for new roommates begin…
Photo of Dublin, Ireland, by Ulrika Andersson