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Kenny – Chile

  • Kenny
  • Studied abroad as a Junior
  • Studied at: Pontificia Universidad Católica de Valparaíso (PUCV) in Valparaiso, Chile
  • On campus, Kenny is a peer tutor for learning services, part of the SHARP team with admissions, a member of Phi Sigma Pi National Honor Fraternity, and involved in intramural sports!

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I chose this PUCV not only because it fit my preferences academically, but because Chile is such a distinct place and its very authentic culture and diverse terrain drew me right in.

I had a few goals for my trip down to Chile, including:

  • Pass all of my classes
  • Meet a person from each continent/Make a few lifelong friends
  • Break out of my introverted bubble
  • Visit Machu Picchu in Peru
  • Network with native Chileans for possible job opportunities

I think its safe to say that I reached these goals and so much more!

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While in South America I had the pleasure of exploring Northern Chile, the metropolitan area of Santiago, Machu Picchu in Peru, famous vineyards, all 3 of Pablo Neruda’s homes, LOTS of trekking/hiking, visiting the Andes, learning how to surf, participating in a small soccer league, and so much more.

I think that with our highly capable Global Education office and all the opportunities and exchange programs they offer, there is not one good reason I can think of to NOT study abroad. It’s important to recognize that although we live in a highly connected world, we sometimes forget that there are other ways to live life and other perspectives. Studying abroad is a way to introduce yourself to the world and really branch out and broaden your horizons. It can also provide you with very important interpersonal and networking skills that will aid you personally and professionally. Overall, I think that MU students should consider studying in another country because it allows you to leave your comfort zone and really get to know yourself and the world in which we live first-hand.

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If there is one crucial piece of advice I’d give, it’d be to diligently complete your application process, buy your tickets, etc. with plenty of time to spare (if possible) because once you’re a few weeks out from departing, all you’re going to be thinking about is that first day you step foot in your destination of choice. With that being said, the application process is 100% worth it once you are all set to go.

Try things you never imagined trying, force yourself out of your comfort zone and put down your phone! One thing I’d like to stress is that you need to live the experience. Although pictures are nice, I feel that for many of my fellow exchange students abroad their experience was about being connected instead of really living it.

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