Studying in Chiang Mai for the first summer session was my first study abroad eperience ever. I absolutely adored the scenery and the community near the dorms we stayed. My favotire part of our little neighborhood was Mommy Thailand's smoothie shop. Her smoothies were the size of my head, and only cost 60 baht(less than a dollar)!! She also gave me a really good haircut and helped me practice my Thai speaking. At school, it was amazing to just be stdents and go aorund campus in our uniforms just like the thai students. I do wish we had more interaction with the local students though, because we lived and did activites mostly with the American students. All of the field trips were exciting and eye opening. I took the maximum amount of credits I could, with Buddhism, Thai Language, Thai Cooking, and the hill Tribe Field Study course. In the field study one, we got to lvie in villages with the local tribes and get immersed into their culture. I absolutley lovd being out in nature and hiking as wekk, even though I did not go on the hiking excursion "class". I got super lucky with my roommate, and she and I are best friends now. All the people I studied with were exceptionally nice and we all were open to new things and it was great to be thrown into new circumstances with them all. I learned so much about myself as an independant person, and about how I want to be globally involved. In my school at home, we focus on global community, but it was a whole different world when I got to interact with a culture so different form mine. For anyone worried about going somewhere so different from western society, I would sayembrace it! It's not very often you get a chance to completely change your perspective and become more aware. Plus, thai people still like the same things we do and there is lenty of modern culture that everyone can relate to. The main difference is that standards for sanitationt here are not as high as in the US, but i never got sick or had any issues because of that! I definitely have started saving up money to go back to Thailand as soon as possible. I hope you have fun there too!!