Identities are intersectional and you will soon incorporate “study abroad alum” as one more aspect of your identity. As you begin your journey, it is possible that you will be seen and understood by individuals from your host country in a completely new context. This can differ from how you perceive yourself or how you are perceived on the UMBC campus, in Maryland, in your hometown, or elsewhere in the United States. Regardless of your background, here are some tips for students studying abroad.

  1. Remember people abroad have different cultural norms
  2. Integrating with the culture will help you stand out less, but physical features (hair color/texture, skin color, etc.) may still attract attention.
  3. Research your host country
  4. Be aware that people may generalize
  5. Build a network of those around you and other students who are abroad

The following resources are starting points for questions you may want to research about your study abroad location before applying to a program and certainly before you depart.