Austria: 5 Things They Don’t Tell You About Studying Abroad

1. Everyone in Europe speaks English Every night in the international dorm I speak with people from Spain, France, Italy, Germany, Austria, South Korea, and Portugal. The thing that unites us all is that we all speak English! They grow up at a young age learning English as their primary second language. In addition, despite…

Japan: One Final Look Back

My time in Japan has come to an end. It’s bittersweet: I’m ready to get back to the US and get to work since I now have my degree, but I’ve really enjoyed my time and how much I’ve grown as a person while abroad. I gained a ton of perspective about the world and…

Japan: You Can’t Do Tokyo In Just Three Days

My time in Japan has been winding down, so I decided to end my time in Japan with just a few days of relaxation and enjoyment by visiting Tokyo and Yokohama before heading home to the good ‘ole US of A. I even roped in one of my newfound friends from Ritsumeikan to come along…

An Accidental Side Trip to Taiwan

Funny story: I accidentally put myself on a trip to Taiwan over Christmas. It wasn’t exactly anything I expected to do, and it sure wasn’t cheap, but I’ll be darned if it wasn’t one of the most memorable experiences I had here during my study abroad. Here’s how it happened: students at Ritsumeikan University as…

Italy: Living Large in Small Ways

Pop culture has ingrained in us, and young women especially, that Italy has a magical transformative qualityー ever heard of Roman Holiday or Lizzie McGuire the Movie? I have to admit that I fell for that allure when I signed up to take Italian freshman year, but despite not becoming an Italian popstar, I found…

Japan: Small Details Make For Big Differences

It’s interesting how much difference there is between the U.S. and Japan that doesn’t meet the eye at first. When I arrived here in Japan in early September, I had the idiotic delusion that American life is not that different from Japanese life. Of course, on the surface, that is 100% true: very few differences…

Japan: Food Heaven

Let’s talk food in Japan, because holy mother of God…the food here is just as good as you would expect. Now, before I continue, keep in mind that I’m not here on vacation, so the really expensive stuff is very much out of reach for me. (I’m saving the Kobe/Wagyu beef and Michelin Guide restaurants…

Japan: Not Quite Paradise

Most Americans (and Westerners, in general) who are interested in travelling hear amazing things about Japan: amazing food, beautiful scenery, polite people, and incredible culture. I’ve been lucky enough over the past two months to experience these things for myself. For example, I went to a world-renowned restaurant for tonkotsu ramen with a fellow American…

Italy: Eat Like a Pro

One of the classes I am most eager to take this semester is called “The Discovery of Italy through its Culinary Traditions.” The class meets twice a week, once for an in-class lesson about the history and culture behind Italian food and once for a cooking lab practical in the cafeteria. We’ll learn about food…

Train Traveling Guide

This summer as I study abroad at the University of Cambridge, having a home-base close to London has been extremely convenient! I have never been to the UK, so this was a great time to take weekend and day trips to many new places. My main suggestion is, if you’re in the UK for a…