People often ask about our experiences abroad, but rarely give us time to paint a whole picture. Instead we reply with a quick, “Study abroad was amazing!” or “Study abroad was life-changing!” But what does that actually look like? Anyone who has spent time in a new environment knows it can be as challenging as it is rewarding. Cultural adjustment is a “roller coaster” that continues for a period of time after we return home, and the reflections often continue throughout our lives.

The Amherst College study abroad blog, Beyond the Bubble, intends to provide a genuine glimpse into the life of a student abroad and the transformations that take place both during and after the experience—from language barriers, new perspectives, and shifting identities to making friends abroad and reflecting on the meaning of home. Our bloggers will share their journey as Amherst College students and alumni with varied interests and multiple identities, and as people with a curiosity for the world around them.

We invite you to follow along, to reflect and learn with us.

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Study abroad bloggers are Amherst students who are writing and reflecting upon their study abroad experiences, with intentionality, as they are happening.

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Returnee reflections are a collection of students’ thoughts now that they’ve returned to campus and had some time to process, reflect, and share what they’ve learned.

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Alumni profiles feature Amherst alumni whose study abroad experiences significantly impacted their life path.

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