I am extremely excited to take part in Semester at Sea this spring! For those unfamiliar with SAS, it is an academic program that is held on a ship, allowing students to country-hop and then take their classes on the ship in between ports. This particular voyage is concentrated within Northeast and Southeast Asia (perfect for this Asian Studies minor!), then travels around Africa and ends in the United Kingdom (full itinerary here). So for 112 days I will be sailing around the world with many other students from across the country.

I was initially wary of choosing a program that would prevent me from submerging myself in a country’s culture. If you know me well, then you are aware of my love for anything Chinese. After going to China during a summer in high school I knew studying in Beijing or Shanghai for a semester was my first choice for an abroad program in college. It made sense not only because I have been studying the language for so long, but also because it’d give me a chance to view China as a local (or, as local as one can get in three months) rather than a tourist.

But a professor of mine that was aware of my Asian Studies background pointed out that I had been to (and have the drive to return to) China but have yet to visit any other country I’m learning about in my area of study. That was true. I had spent so much time learning about different countries surrounding China; how much cooler would it be to visit them?

After speaking to friends who had been on SAS and stalking tons of SAS-related blogs, it was evident that it was life-changing and that I had to do it. So here I am!

For the next three months I will have very limited internet access, but for the rare times that I do I am excited to share part of my adventure through this blog!

All my love,

B

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