Why Stockholm? A question that many have asked me even to this day. Is it the city life or the feeling of constantly being on the move? I will never have the perfect answer to why I decided to study abroad in Stockholm, but I can wholeheartedly say that I decided to study in a place that in fact feels like home away from home. Being from a fairly big city, I am used to the constant commute, feeling of being in the city, and walking a lot. But other factors that have attracted me to Stockholm were the copious amounts of coffee that the Swedes consume, their balance between work and life, and most importantly because of my interest to get to know the Swedes better.
Being a psychology major, my college career and focus has been on taking an active role in trying to get to know other people’s behavior and observing how their culture affects their mannerisms. My program here in Stockholm is Positive Psychology and I believe that it fits perfectly with the study abroad experience. I am constantly walking around Stockholm pulling out all of the beautiful strengths that this city has to offer. At my home institution, Lafayette College, I have spent three years of my life working in an assortment of labs looking at the cognitive development of children between the ages of 2 and 3 and the emotional stress of humans in general. I believe that living in Stockholm will allow me to not only immerse myself in the culture but also give me the opportunity to apply my coursework in a cross-cultural perspective.
In Stockholm, I reside in a beautiful residential community with a number of other American DIS students that make the apartment lifestyle feel like home. Waking up to a gorgeous view of the water reminds me that I am in paradise. Leaving the bustling city of Philadelphia and reaching a peaceful environment that I get to inhabit for the next couple of months did not seem like a bad trade when weighing the options of if I should study abroad or not.
Being the social butterfly I am, leaving college; a place where I thrived the most seemed to be very nerve-racking to me. I had a ton of fears when thinking about leaving my secure base of an environment and moving to a place where I have to ask for help when it comes to things like grocery shopping or how to get somewhere. As soon as I flew into Arlanda, all of those fears and feelings of anxiety completely went out the window. I felt secure, happy, and most importantly ready to take this city by the horns.
Traveling and studying abroad in college are once in a lifetime opportunities and I plan on taking full advantage of all that it has to offer. Whether it be getting lost in a random part of town or just walking into one of the many cafés to enjoy a daily fika, I’ll know that studying abroad in Stockholm, Sweden was the perfect choice for me. So please follow me as I go through this journey and take note of my triumphs and mistakes so we can learn together!