Study Abroad Experience - Shaniya Wilson-Harper

Shaniya Wilson-Harper

Taking the initiative to study abroad had to have been one of the greatest decisions I have ever made and one of the biggest blessings I have been given thus far. Of course, if it was not for SAEE (Student Access and Educational Equity) and the Douglass Residential College, studying abroad would have remained an unrealistic goal of mine. Greece taught me how to take risks (cliff jumping into the Mediterranean Sea), to love what I may not understand, and to appreciate the little things in life.

There was a quote I once heard by Mark Batterson, that stated, “you are one decision away from a totally different life.” My advice to whoever may be reading this is to travel. One of the most valuable lessons I’ve learned is that the best insights one can gain about another country are by being in the country itself. Because I allowed myself to become fully immersed in the Greek culture, I now have a better understanding of Greece. As I look back, the moment that stood out to me the most was when a young little girl ran into my arms and started crying because she was so grateful with what I and the other students have done for her and her family. I don’t think I could articulate in words how much of an impact this trip has made for me. When I came back to the states I felt like a completely different person. I felt much wiser, much more confident and much more assured of what I needed to do within this world. In order for me to become the change I wish to see within this world, I need to take the initiative to make it something.