Today marks the first time I have traveled internationally by myself. I will also be boarding a plane using a one way ticket for the first time. When I arrive I will be moving into my first apartment that is in my own name, and begin my first job that isn’t some variation of a summer internship. Belgrade will be the first city I have lived in that is not on the eastern coast of the United States, and it remains the first (and only) place I have visited that uses the Cyrillic alphabet.
Now, if you pulled me aside during my freshman year of high school and told me that, at nineteen, I would be spending six months working with an (absolutely incredible!!!) nonprofit in Belgrade I would have laughed in your face. Hell, if you told me that during my freshman year of college my reaction would’ve been the same. And yet…
These kinds of opportunities are precisely what drew me to Northeastern University. The university has given me innumerable, incredible options, all of which sound more and more ridiculous each time I try to explain them to friends and family- though I had seen that coming.
As a freshman, I spent the year getting a feel for the campus, but also met some incredible people. People who studied anything and everything you can think of. People who have lived/worked/traveled everywhere. People who win research grants every other week and people who have just applied for their first co-op or their first job for after graduation. People who love learning, love doing, and are doing. It blew my mind.
After going abroad this summer it became clear that these people really were the norm at Northeastern, which made me immensely proud, but also has ensured that I have a strong network of friends who see the world and out place in it in a similar way.
So, while I’m terrified by the prospect of leaving behind just about everything I know for the next six months I am also ecstatic, because I know that I can share this with everyone when I return.
I fell in love with Boston sometime last November, said goodbye to it this past December, and will be returning in September (maybe, who knows), but I know that I will carry the essence of my Boston home with me wherever I go.
I’m posting this to procrastinate the last of my packing, so I’ll wrap it up here. But, basically, I'm on my way to the airport with my bags, a camera, and a one way ticket. I'lll see you on the other side!
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