Last month Sydney DeSpain took a trip that was a little different than your typical summer studying abroad. She didn’t roam around Europe like many college students tend to do, but instead she went to Ghana, Africa! While it was a hard adjustment living in a country so different than her own, it was a valuable journey she will never forget!
| Ghana |
Sydney went to Africa with TCU study abroad. She has always wanted to travel somewhere across the Atlantic, and Africa was calling her name! There was never a typical day for Sydney during her time in Africa; one day consisted of swimming near a picturesque waterfall, another playing with children, and another day she spent her time hand-feeding monkeys. Sydney’s favorite memory of her time spent in Africa was a day where they went to a local orphanage just to play with the kids.Sydney said that the children were so full of energy and that “it was so neat to see how kids from different countries act in so many similar ways to kids in the United States.” The kids at the orphanage were extremely excited to have visitors and seeing how happy they were made Sydney realize that a simple life can often times be a better life.
| Q & A |
What did you miss most about home?
I missed literally everything. One of the hardest things about this trip was that I had nothing that I could find comfort in except my faith. It was such a struggle, but it was totally worth it!
What was the most important lesson you learned while studying abroad?
How incredibly blessed we are to live in the United States. My study abroad was not the typical study abroad—I’m talking bucket showers, sickness, and literally all things unenjoyable. But, whenever I got over the fact that most places are NOT like the United States, I realized how simplicity in your life style can be so much more relaxing and how time spent with others increases by a ten fold. Also, I realized how strong faith can actually be. Getting out of your comfort zone in literally all ways can push you to grow in ways you never thought possible, or in places you didn’t think you could grow anymore. And for that I am truly thankful.
Do you have any advice for other girls traveling abroad this summer?
Get outside your comfort zone! It can be super uncomfortable and not enjoyable, but you grow so much as a person by having an experience like that.
Thanks for sharing your summer travels with us Sydney! Sounds like Africa was an unforgettable and humbling experience. See you back in Fort Worth soon!