I would say don't think it and do it. As someone who comes from a very sheltered background, the whole process of studying abroad has changed my view on life and even taught me great life lessons. Even before leaving Canada I was learning a lot in preparation for the trip, the things I learned, like
budgeting and researching where to go and how to get there, it was all something I've never done myself.
I think going abroad really teaches a person responsibility, people skills, and overall gives them a more open mind, these were some qualities that I found I improved on during my time abroad, and it
has definitely carried itself back to Canada. It's a once in a lifetime opportunity.
Going abroad for me was like putting my life in Canada on pause, and moving to an alternate universe. Things were familiar and yet different, a good different. I really want to encourage other students to take this
opportunity to experience other cultures and really immerse in a new world. The relationships that are built and places that are seen will all be so influential and inspiring.
I look back at my time in Japan, and the only thought I have is "I can't wait to go back some day."
Read Jessica's full report (.pdf) on her semester abroad at Hokkaido College of Art and Design in Japan.