Going Global: Study Abroad Q&A with Julia Corbett
Carolina students have amazing opportunities at their fingertips, and studying abroad is one of the most popular. UNC offers more than 300 study abroad programs across 70 different countries – from summer semesters to year-long programs. Over the past few days, we have introduced you to five Carolina students who packed their bags and set out to new classrooms all over the world. Here is our final profile with junior Julia Corbett.
“Although I’d been taking Spanish classes since the seventh grade, when I arrived in Chile – I understood absolutely nothing. But because of the language immersion of the program, I left having long and interesting conversations with Chileans.“
Julia Corbett from Somers, New York
SIT Chile: Cultural Identity, Social Justice, and Community Development; Valparaíso, Chile
Favorite memory from abroad: My favorite memories from study abroad are the interviews I conducted with artists and activists in Valparaíso for my research project. They were incredibly rewarding, both because I was able to conduct them entirely in Spanish and because of how much I learned from and related to the people I interviewed. These interviews also helped me feel more a part of the city and connect with locals.
How you think your time abroad will benefit you: I think the most valuable skill I gained abroad was my ability to speak Spanish. Although I’d been taking Spanish classes since the seventh grade, when I arrived in Chile – I understood absolutely nothing. But because of the language immersion of the program, I left having long and interesting conversations with Chileans (although I’m definitely not fluent yet). I also think my research paper, written in Spanish, will be useful to future employers who are curious about my language ability, ability to conduct research, interviews, or my understanding of art and activism.
Advice to students who want to study abroad: My advice to students who want to study abroad is to start thinking about it early. Make an appointment with the study abroad office your freshman year, talk to professors about study abroad, and just get an idea of whats out there and what you want. Also, think about what ways you can get involved in the community where you study. This can be trickier if you’re learning a language: host families, student groups, or volunteer opportunities can be great ways to get the most out of your experience.
To find out more about study abroad opportunities at Carolina, please visit the Study Abroad website at https://studyabroad.unc.edu/.