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### Exploring Cultures: Students Embrace Diverse Experiences in Semester Study Abroad

Charlotte Weir is currently pursuing her studies in Paris, attending the American University of Paris. The photograph is provided by Charlotte Weir.

Reported by Ashlyn Kennedy

At present, Baylor University boasts a total of 15,213 undergraduate students, with a portion of them scattered worldwide, beyond the confines of Waco.

Encouraging a global perspective, Baylor urges students to partake in a study abroad program during their undergraduate years to broaden their horizons and engage with diverse cultures.

Sophomore Charlotte Weir from Orlando, Florida, has embarked on her educational journey in Paris, enrolled at the American University of Paris. This institution attracts students from various nationalities, offering predominantly English-taught courses.

Weir noted the contrasting academic standards and emphasis on self-discipline at her current secular academic environment. She expressed gratitude for her Christian upbringing but acknowledged the enriching experience of being in a setting where religious beliefs are more varied.

Reflecting on her time in Paris, Weir emphasized how the experience has expanded her worldview beyond the sheltered environment of Baylor, exposing her to the vast diversity present in the world.

Similarly, Houston junior Sarah Chan is embracing a semester in Madrid, residing with a host mother. Through this living arrangement, she has immersed herself in the Spanish culture, gaining insights through shared meals and daily interactions.

Chan’s decision to study in Spain was fueled by a desire for personal growth and language enrichment. She cherishes the interpersonal connections forged with locals, relishing the opportunity to integrate into the Spanish way of life.

Meanwhile, Dallas sophomore Lauren Goree is balancing academics and an internship in London. She appreciates the pronounced emphasis on work-life balance in the UK, contrasting it with the pervasive work-centric culture in the United States.

Goree anticipated personal development during her time abroad but was pleasantly surprised by the extent of transformation she has undergone. The experience has instilled in her a newfound appreciation for life’s simple pleasures, prompting a shift in perspective on various aspects of her daily routine.

Each student’s unique encounter with a foreign culture underscores the transformative power of studying abroad, offering a fresh lens through which to view the world and one’s place within it.