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COVID-19 Message from UC Merced Study Abroad

Please know that we are here to help you dream and plan to go abroad whenever you are ready and programs can reopen. (More info)

Vivian in Front of Lanterns
Vivian Pham
Management & Business Economics
Term Abroad: 
Spring 2019

Q: Initially, what made you decide to study abroad? Why did you choose your program?

A: I wanted to get out of my comfort zone and explore the world while furthering my education.

Q: What was the highlight of your study abroad experience?

A: My highlight was definitely meeting international friends and making bonds that will last a lifetime.

Q: What was your greatest challenge abroad and how did you overcome it?

A: I think the biggest challenge was handling money and time. By sitting down and planning out a budget and daily schedule, it helped to plan out what I needed to get done.

Q: How did your coursework abroad compare to your courses at UC Merced?

A: The coursework was harder this semester due to my taking more upper-division credits, but other than that it was doable.

Q: What did you gain from your study abroad experience?

A: I gained a new view on life, new friends, new experiences and memories. I also learned some life lessons that I believe I wouldn't have been able to learn if I did not go abroad.

Q: What advice do you have for students considering study abroad?

A: My advice for them is to take planning more seriously, don't wait until the last minute. And to always plan your day.

Q: Describe a typical day for you abroad.

A: My day would usually start at around 7 or 8 AM. Most of the time I would try to get a workout in before classes start, and if not I would get ready for class. Depending on the day, classes would start at either 9 AM or 11 AM. I would attend my classes, get lunch with friends, make sure I have some time to facetime my loved ones back home and then go to my Korean Language class every day. Each day would relatively consist of the same routine, but that would depend on how much homework I had. On weekends, however, is when me and my friends would go out and explore.