Thursday, February 27, 2014

Study Abroad

As an engineer, most people think that it is too hard to go abroad. They are told that it is too hard to rearrange their schedules or that their classes will not transfer. That is absolutely not the case. I have always dreamed about going abroad. I had older friends and cousins who went abroad when they were in college and they all raved about their experiences. I knew that I was not going to let the fact that I was an engineer stop me from doing something that I had always wanted to.

I went abroad to Zurich, Switzerland, at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH). I was taking 6 classes, all of them engineering, and I received credit for all of them back at Penn. So do not let anyone tell you that it is not possible. I had other engineering friends who also went abroad to Scotland, London, Australia, and China. It is possible to go anywhere as long as you are determined to do so.

As an engineer, the classes that you will be taking abroad are a little harder than average abroad classes but do not let that deter you; I still had time to travel every weekend. I went to 17 different cities in 8 different countries. Every weekend was a new unique experience and it was absolutely incredible. I learned so much about different cultures and made so many memories that I will never forget. I had such a diverse group of friends (my best friend was from Sweden) and going abroad is an experience that I will always remember. I would absolutely encourage anyone, no matter what his or her major, to go abroad. When else will you have the chance to live in a foreign country for 3-4 months with so many opportunities to travel?

Going abroad as an engineer is 100% possible, so do not let someone tell you that it is not.  Not only is it possible, but it is an absolutely amazing opportunity that everyone should take advantage of. 

Ally is a junior in Bioengineering.  Questions for Ally?  contact her at


  1. Hi Michele. You know I am also an engineer and I am also doubtful about my dream to study abroad. I am thankful to you for encouraging post. Thanks!
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