In January of 2013 I left my beloved midwest home, my sunny bedroom, and my dear family & friends to travel to “the land of the gods”…India! Why India, you ask? Well…here is the story:
Studying abroad was a priority to complete my college experience simply because I love to travel and encounter other cultures. From day one at Nebraska Wesleyan, I was looking into the International Student Exchange Program (ISEP) and where I could study in another country. Initially, I had my eyes set on the Baltic Region after becoming good friends with an Estonian exchange student. However, in taking a course in world religions, I realized I wanted to study religion while abroad, because, in many countries, religion shapes its culture. Similarly, I decided that, since I hope to do travel extensively later in life, I should study in a country that I may never visit again. The answer suddenly hit me—India.
As written before I left: “In India I will be immersed in a culture completely different from America, one that is embodied by religious traditions and strong heritage. India is the birthplace of the world’s major religious traditions, most prominently Hinduism and Buddhism. At the University of Hyderabad, I will be able to take courses in religion, Hindi language, history, and even dance. But I am most excited to explore the city, meet locals, and experience the religious culture firsthand. I hope that this experience will not only give me a greater understanding our world but help me better understand religious diversity and the cultural impact of religion on a deeper level.”
You can decide for yourself after reading this blog whether you think that these expectations were met! 🙂