Go on exchange!

With 2020 starting on not so much of a positive note, let me try and lift everyone up and suggest a fantastic idea. That is, to do an exchange abroad! In my honest and biased opinion, my past few months here at Mount Allison cannot be described in just a few words – it has been that amazing.

Here are three reasons why.

Spending a semester somewhere other than Mount Allison will grow you as an individual. It will push you to become independent and make you understand the world so much better. Yes, being in another country can be quite challenging and might not be something you’re used to, but the experience is worth the challenge. If it was easy, everyone would have done an exchange program, gone to university and jumped out of a plane. Those things are not easy, but the rewards are enormous. The growth you’ll experience as a person is not just mental. It can improve you in a social, interpersonal, political and cultural manner. You name it, you will develop it during exchange.

An exchange also adds on to your university degree. Sometimes doing three to four years at the same institution, in the same place, with the same professors can become repetitive. After a while, you might find you need a change in your life, like me. Spending some time away in a different environment is a way to enact that change, and it adds so many opportunities during and after your university degree. It makes your time as a student even more fulfilling than it already is (minus the assignments), and it allows you to make so many memories and opportunities as well. I may be thinking of moving to Canada now, but we will see. And of course, spending some time studying or working in another country adds to your CV. Who doesn’t want that?

Finally, an exchange gives you an excuse to travel. Whether it is going to Hong Kong, Australia, Europe or the United States, doing an exchange allows you to explore the world and see so many places and faces. I believe we were put on this magnificent Earth to explore its beauty and to exchange with one another. An exchange program can do this and can allow anyone who has the travel bug like me to explore the wonders of this Earth. Besides, it can enable you to get away from the snow, the cold, the wet and the wind of Canada.

Those are a few of the reasons why I went on a year abroad.

If you are thinking of doing a semester or a year abroad, then do it!

Lastly, if you have any questions about exchange, you can speak to me.

I can talk about this all day long!

Hamish Hallett
Hamish Hallet is a contributor to the Argosy.