For the Spring semester of my sophomore year of my undergraduate career, I studied abroad in the NYU study away site located in Sydney, Australia. This was, by far, one of the greatest experiences of my life. Living on the opposite side of the globe was a truly eye-opening and strengthening experience in many respects. I spent four months living with people of a completely different culture than what I was used to. My responsibilities included being a full time student taking seventeen credits, as well as being a keen observer of a lifestyle much different than my own. I tried to make sure to take in as much as I could and participate in as many activities as possible. I learned about Aboriginal culture and the struggles they are still facing today in Australia, which parallels much of the same struggles Native Americans face here in America. One day that stands out to me in my study abroad experience is when I volunteered at Dharawal National Park. Fellow NYU Sydney students, local community members, park rangers, and I all helped plant hundreds of trees in an area of the national park that experienced deforestation. Tasks included working in teams to dig holes, place nutrients, plant seedlings, and erecting fences for each tree we planted. After a long day of hard work, we were lucky enough to see an Aboriginal Discovery Ranger share parts of her culture with us through a presentation on bush tucker. Another valuable experienced I gained came from the trio we took the Blue Mountains, where we hiked through different types of terrain and were given a presentation by an Aboriginal man about heh struggles he and his ancestors went through since the time the British landed on the shores of the gigantic island. We heard about these past, and his current struggles and were able to empathize with him simply by hearing him out and imagining and recognizing his struggle. Overall, I learned how to be more responsible, money management skills, how to be independent, and I also gained a confidence I do not believe I ever would have had had I never studied abroad. This was meaningful to me because it made me into a better version of myself who would not have existed otherwise. Studying abroad exposed me to different customs and cultures that I have never seen before. It instilled in me a newfound confidence in myself and appreciation for different peoples and cultures. For example, after volunteering at Dharawal National Park, I learned about Aboriginal customs and traditions from an actual Aboriginal; this is something that likely would have never happened had I not studied abroad. This experience made me more accepting of people who come from different walks of life than myself, more so than I already did living in New York City.