Name: Paige Bogaerts
Study Abroad: University of Aberdeen, Scotland (Winter 2017)
Paige Bogaerts is a third year Bachelor of Arts student studying geography at UFV. She is currently studying abroad in Scotland at the University of Aberdeen. She decided to study abroad because it seemed like such an amazing opportunity that she just couldn’t refuse. In addition, it was also something she had dreamt about doing for a very long time. “I have always had the travel bug (literally always) and the opportunity to actually move to a new country with a bunch of like-minded individuals was something that sounded so incredible!” Paige says.
Above a travel bug though, at 20 years old, Paige wanted to do something crazy and brave and most importantly, she wanted to prove to herself and get to know herself better. When you travel to a new country on your own, you are faced with all kinds of challenges you wouldn’t have considered having to face. “It is a real eye-opener on how you handle yourself! I for one grew stronger right on day one when I had to carry two very heavy backpacks through the London Heathrow airport with way too many layers of clothing on!” Paige states.
It took a really good week for Paige to settle down. She started to miss home and felt the orientation week went by very slow. “I was feeling very small in a brand new city!” Paige describes. However, near the end of her first week in Scotland, she met a group of new friends that were also exchange students. From there on, it has been a whirlwind of fun and travel and pub crawls! There is never a dull moment. According to Paige, “It is amazing being in a new country and I wouldn’t trade it for the world!”
Here is Paige’s advice to students who are considering studying abroad:
“If you have ever considered studying abroad – do it. Do not fear the unknown, and forget all of your qualms; whether it be about loneliness, money, missing something at home… NO! Get out there and do this. You will regret coming in the first couple of days, but you will have a million times where you look around and feel so grateful you came. This is truly a once in a lifetime experience, and passing it up would be a huge mistake. It is so much easier to do than you think, so just be brave and jump right in! What a life!”
Thanks Paige for sharing your experience with us and we can’t wait to hear more about your adventure!