Exchange @ Kaist University, South Korea | 4th Year Student @ Department of Metallurgical Engineering and Material Sciences, IIT Bombay
I always wanted to explore the Korean culture; hence Kaist became the perfect opportunity for me. With more than 150 exchange students from different parts of the world, I interacted with people from different backgrounds and cultures and also made friends for life! Everyone had a different story, different aspirations and different desires. Balancing the competent academics, I managed to travel across the beautiful country, with the ever changing city vibe, calm islands and their warmly welcoming, kind and harmonious culture, made me feel at home in Korea just by myself. Through the solo escapades, hikings, temple stays and biking trips, I could see myself being more enthusiastic and trying new things and even appreciating the things I already have. Life's a full circle and I'm back to institute again, but I'm definitely not the same person anymore and the experiences gained will be etched in my heart forever. Gamsahamnida korea!
Exchange @ Universidad Carlos III de Madrid | 4th Year Student @ Department of Electrical Engineering, IIT Bombay
On 29th May, a day before my birthday, I got a mail saying I've been accepted by the A4U university. I confirmed the news once again and went on to embark on one of the most beautiful and influencing journey of my life so far. I wish I could say staying alone in a new country with a language you barely spoke, all alone for the very first time out of India was easy but it wasn't. But this proved to be one of the out of world experiences. I am not sure if I will ever have gotten something like this if I hadn't applied for an exchange.
I made so many memories here, met so many people, accepting and appreciating the differences, learning to be okay all by myself and most importantly the confidence I gained in the process was priceless. I have made friends here, collaborated with a couple of them for projects, gone to explore Spain with them and exchanged crazy stories while embracing the Spanish culture. I stayed here with a warm Spanish family to integrate into the culture better and it had been one hell of an experience! I think my exchange has made me understand beyond the borders, the people and their culture, where they are different than us and where they are just like all of us. This exchange also enlightened spirits of nationalism in me that I barely knew existed before. I would recommend everyone to go embark on their own journey to find themselves and even if they didn't, you're sure to make the memories you'll always hold dear! I thank god, A4U and my institute to have given me such a once in a lifetime opportunity. I'll forever be grateful! Couldn't have asked for a better exchange!