Wow, I can’t believe that in just four days I will be saying goodbye to Viterbo, the town that has been my home for the past 11 weeks. This not so small medieval town has transformed me into a new person who is more culturally aware, opened minded, and independent.
Before deciding to hop on a 19 hour flight to an unknown country for the whole summer, I decided to do a little research before- hand. The only thing that “this little research” entitled was the Googling of the university that I would be attending. I felt that was the only information that I needed to know because I wanted everything else to be a surprise.
Wanting a change of pace in my day to day life and to take a break from all of my many responsibilities, I decided that it was finally time to do something from myself. Therefore, I asked myself, what has been the one thing that you have always wanted to do? It didn’t take long for me to have an answer to this question because I automatically knew that I have always wanted to study abroad in Italy. Even though, my decision seemed kind of a rushed one, I knew that I had to follow my gut and take a risk. So that’s what I did.
Flying on an international flight by myself for 19 hours to a different country, where I have no family members or friends was one of the most terrifying things that I have done. But coming into this experience without any expectations and completely blind folded was what made my study abroad experience so much more than what I could have imagined or asked for. Starting with the amazing USAC staff, the locals, and USAC students I met on the way that helped make this such a memorable experience. No matter how many days, months, or years go by this city will always hold a special place in my heart because for the short amount of time spent in Viterbo, I was able to find myself, gain the self-independence I was striving for, learn and see the world in a different light, and to not be afraid to try new things or to get lost because that is part of the whole experience.
After having this amazing opportunity to study abroad, I would love to give other students who are studying in Viterbo some advice. First on the list is to have fun, to not be afraid to immerse themselves in the culture because the people are wonderful and you will learn a lot from them, to learn and practice their Italian or to purchase a pocket dictionary, but most importantly to live every moment to the fullest, and to take advantage of every opportunity that comes your way even if it was not planned.
Selyna Bermudez: sono una studentessa dell’Università del Nevada, Las Vegas. Il mio indirizzo è il giornalismo con studi sui media e sui servizi umani. Questa estate sto studiando in Italia a Viterbo con USAC. Ho scelto una piccola città, per vivere la tranquillità e le bellezze che offre. Essere una parte di essa mi ha permesso di esplorare la mia scrittura e dare voce a ciò che vedo.