Moving abroad and starting over in a new country is one of the most terrifying yet exciting adventures ever. Six years since moving to Kamloops, here’s what it’s like living abroad.
Becoming culturally aware
It is natural that some of us are more exposed to multiculturalism and diversity than others, depending on where we are from. I remember my first group project at TRU where my professor asked the class to form only diverse groups, meaning everyone needed to be from a different country/ nationality. At that moment, I realized how diverse Canada was. Every member of our group of 6 was from a different country and cultural background. In that group alone, I gained more knowledge about other cultures than ever before.
Apart from class, there are many ways to get involved and learn about other cultures on campus. While pursuing my degree, I made sure to join student clubs and volunteer around campus. That way, you are not only exposed to different cultures, improving your English, but it is also a great way to make friends!
My biggest take away from that is that when moving abroad, get involved and ask questions – it can lead to great friendships and learning!
Dealing with homesickness
Moving abroad is like joining this exclusive special club. You will be part of two worlds – your old and your new home. However, it does come with a downside: homesickness.
Homesickness comes gradually. For me, it started when I missed my first family gathering and the first big achievement of one of my good friends. The list starts to get longer, and you’ll start feeling guilty for all that you are missing.
That is why you’ll learn that a good internet signal and social media will become your best friends. You’ll spend hours checking Instagram Stories or calling your family, and that’s completely ok! It also helps to bring items from your home – I remember I brought my favorite blanket so I could feel cozy during the cold winter months.
This is an experience of a lifetime. Living abroad will make you grow in ways you did not think it was possible! Until this day, choosing to come to Kamloops was one of the best decisions I ever made.
I’ve made friends from all over the world, learned how to drive in the snow, lived in different places and with different people, changed majors twice, graduated, volunteered, started working with something I am passionate about and much more!
Of course, there are ups and downs, but there’s no other experience just like it. You’ll grow as a student, professional and most importantly, as a person.
Remember to embrace the change with an open mind! And remember, you’re not alone.
Share your experience of moving abroad below so you can help some fellow students that are going through the same!