Imad’s Story

I’m proud more than ever that I’ve got the boldness to go out to experiment this exchange program in Madrid!

So what will I start off with? The weather? The school? The spirit? The college town? The people? As an international student, everything was so new to my college experience. Ever since middle school, I had planted the seed in my own head of studying abroad. I wanted a new experience. I was frightened and excited at the same time. I was scared I would not meet people at orientation, would not make friends in class, or would be paired with a weird roommate (or maybe I would be the weird roommate haha!)

The quality of life and the vast professional and academic activity attract a great number of expats for work or studies. Personally, in the context of my studies, I had the opportunity to gain substantial professional experience in my area of interest. I learned about the school, the country, the culture, and new people. I have no regrets.

For a lot of us, we are afraid of the unknown. We’re terrified of moving towards something we can’t physically see. We can’t think too far ahead without getting paralyzed with fear. The future always seems so far away. So blurry, so wavering. There’s something intimidating in not knowing. There’s so much room for questions, uncertainty, and doubt.

When it comes to languages, I learned the most both in English, and Spanish. At first, I didn’t know any word in Spanish, except “Hola”! But I loved the language! and I loved Spanish accent! So amazing! I committed to learn new words on a daily basis and try to practice as much as I can! Even though my initial goal was to improve only my English!

The studies here are a lot more easier! You have a lot of free time! the overall program is so easy!

On the personal level, I think I’ve took the most advantage, I deeply needed this experience, cause I was relying on my family on everything, today it’s the first time ever that I live away from home! that was so challenging! But I’m so proud and grateful that I’ve took this step for a next level of commitment and responsibility for a better future!

The greatest amount of beauty and fear lies in not knowing. It is the unknown that pushes us forward, but also holds us back. Reflecting on my out-of-stater experience, it was never too frightening. It was simply a process of settling, adjusting, and then eventually calling this place my second home.