The way I see it, everyone has around eight semesters to achieve their degree. What we choose to do within those semesters is up to us as long as we meet our concentrations requirements and maintain a minimum GPA. What some often forget, however, is that behind that degree are all of the memories and friends that we made along that way during those semesters.
For me, study abroad was a way to not only strengthen my Chinese fluency and further my pursuit for a Chinese major, but also to turn 12.5% of my eight-semester college experience into some of the most memorable months of my life. For me, choosing to study with IES Beijing began with the recommendations from many peers and trusted professors. From there, my own research concreted my decision to spend a semester in the Chinese capital.
IES did a terrific job with everything inside and outside of the classroom to ensure that our experience in China was enriching. The two things I enjoyed most from my time with IES were the week long IES-sponsored field trip in Yunnan and taking place in the opening event for the year of joint tourism between the US and China which took place at the Great Wall.
I am disappointed. Disappointed that I waited so long to study abroad. Disappointed that I only spent one semester with IES Beijing. To say that I was pleased with my experience would be an understatement. When I arrived at the Beijing airport to begin my program in China, I was counting down the days until I would be back home in America. When I arrived at the airport again to head home, I was counting down the days until I could return to Beijing again.