The first thing everyone has asked me when I returned was, ‘What was your favorite part about your time in Europe?’. I don’t know how I am expected to pick out one thing after having visited seven countries, countless cities, and making a million memories in each. Can I pick my whole experience as my favorite thing? There was never a dull moment while living abroad and always a new adventure around every corner.

After living in Spain for four months, it has become a part of me. It feels weird to be leaving a place that means so much to me and not knowing when I will get a chance to return. Not only am I leaving behind a county that feels like home, but also all the wonderful friends that I made along the way. After these short four months, we all bonded over new experiences and became a family to each other when our real families were halfway across the world. It will be weird not being within five minutes from them all and just being able to meet up on a whim since we all live spread all over the USA. I think these bonds that we have created can never go away, even though we all live hours away now. We have all taught each other so many valuable lessons such as friendship, independence, and spontaneity. None of us will soon forget how we explored foreign cities and took on new cultures together.

Our last week together we all took every opportunity to get out in Sevilla and see what we could one last time together before we all went home. We went out to get dinners together and of course, all went to the goodbye party on the last day of exams to say goodbye to the amazing staff of ICS and to all of the teachers. Our semester would not have been as great of an experience without all of them to help lead us in the right direction and teach us about the city and country we were living in.

Personally, I learned and grew a lot myself and know that I chose the right time and place to study. Sevilla introduced me to the Spanish culture which I fell in love with and hope to incorporate into my life in the USA. I already knew that I loved to travel before this semester but now I know that I can travel alone and have the confidence to plan a trip and do whatever I want in those cities. Before I would never have dreamed of going across the globe alone but this semester I did, and I am so much better off for it. I think that Sevilla was the best place possible to be fully immersed into the culture and society which I believe is so important to learn about our world. I would recommend Sevilla any day as the perfect place to study abroad, especially the ICS program but regardless I think a study abroad experience is great for any college student and I know that mine has been some of the best months of my life.

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