“[Travel has] definitely given me more of an open world view with an open mind to things. It’s changed my patience level, because it helped me realize all the different paths people could be coming from and what they’re doing could have a million different reasons. It’s also changed my views on politics quite a bit as well, since I’ve traveled more I can see where different people’s political situations have affected their life. So it’s really changed my view on politics and how open I’d like the country to be versus how open it is and other things like that. It’s especially opened my mind to all the different possibilities and backgrounds people have.
Somewhat, I think when I was a kid I believed a lot more stereotypes than I should have. Just ‘cause I grew up in a really conservative city that doesn’t have a lot of international travelers. Now I know that I should take stereotypes with a grain of salt, because they all have some basic truth but they’re mostly false.
I don’t know if it’s made me seen my home country in a better light unfortunately. On one hand it gives me a lot of respect for the way that we do some things, because I like the way we do some things better in the US than abroad, but then vice versa I feel like there’s a lot of things that I like a lot better abroad. Like I think a lot of the models in Europe are much more efficient then how we run things here, then again the political climate changed drastically during my study abroad so that also shaped how I viewed my home country and its’ residents, especially how they view outsiders and world travel. It seems like people have polarized on one side of the spectrum or the other now, whereas before it didn’t use to be like that. So it’s given me a different outlook for sure.”