Submitted by Ben Horney on the 2022 winter session program in the United Arab Emirates sponsored by the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering…
My first week in Dubai was nothing short of spectacular – the places, food, and people. Traditionally, culture shock is associated with disorientation and anxiety; however, my experience with “culture shock” has been a bit different thus far. Yes, I am not familiar with the local culture yet, but I quickly realized that it is important to keep an open mind while traveling (this is my first time traveling internationally).
Visiting Dubai Expo 2020 especially exemplified the good that is out there and reassured me that people are more or less the same at heart wherever they live. For the readers that do not know, Expo is equivalent to the World’s Fair. It is an exhibition that showcases architecture, science, technology, etc. from each country. Each country has its own pavilion and staff; it was great to talk to the staff and make new friends.
Overall, I want to get the point across that traveling does not have to be scary. I am grateful for the opportunity to talk to people of different nationalities, and I plan on making new friends along the way. In fact, I recently befriended two girls from England and learned about their way of life. If there is anybody that is contemplating studying abroad, I urge you to take the risk and jump! You are almost certain to reap an abundance of rewards.