By Professor Sylvia Rasi-Gregorutti

Does hearing that lower your heart rate? I hope so—grace periods always make me happy, too! If you’re still in college here at PUC, even if you’ll wrap things up soon, it’s probably NOT too late to study abroad with Adventist Colleges Abroad. Whether for a summer program (no previous language study required), or during the Academic Year (or 1-2 quarters), you don’t have be a foreign language major. You can even participate after graduating this June! I love sending students, like you, to study abroad to Argentina, Austria, England, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Israel, Italy, Lebanon and Spain. In many cases, when they return to PUC, we can catch up in Spanish, French or Italian! So… why should YOU study abroad? Here are 8 excellent reasons (I could list more!). 1) You get the opportunity to stretch beyond your limited perspective, to travel extensively and see how people live in other parts of the world. An insight into how they think, eat, act, seeing what they truly value in life. Even better, make friends with people you otherwise would have never met before—and leave a piece of your heart with them! 2) On all ACA campuses (except England), you can learn another language. This opens doors to new career opportunities— and sometimes higher pay. It’s also a chance to discover a new “you” who speaks in German, or Arabic, or Spanish—and act that way, too! 3) When you study abroad, you get to know yourself, you learn new strengths and face down weaknesses. You become more resilient, responsible, and tolerant. You either become more certain of your chosen degree and career path, or, you change based on the deeper knowledge you have of yourself. 4) While abroad, you can earn general education credit and credit toward minors and majors (such as our interdisciplinary Global Development Studies BA/BS)—and it’s less expensive to earn those credits abroad. To learn the financial details, see Student Finance Director Freddy Whiteside, and he can give you the specifics on your particular situation. 5) You have the chance to lean more on God. You hear it often from SMs and it’s also true for many ACA alumni. When you’re away from your usual surroundings and the usual crowd, thrown into challenging circumstances and come into contact with peers from other countries who have strong relationships with God, you have the chance to grow spiritually. 6) You can have “never-againin-your-life “ experiences, like attending Midnight Mass in the Vatican on Christmas Eve, rafting in Patagonia, skiing in the Alps, joining in World Cup victories, looking up extended family in Sicily, traveling to Israel on a bargain ticket. When will you, in the future, be able to step off the conveyer belt of life to do these things? 7) If you make progress in the local language during the Academic Year, you can have incredible internships. Interested in helping set up displays for the world-renowned Uffizi art gallery in Florence, Italy? Want to work as an intern at CERN in Geneva, Switzerland? Even “mundane” experience such as teaching children English or working with Syrian refugees can be life-altering. 8) No regrets! If you participate in study abroad you’ll be among the lucky ones who not only proudly wear their “ACA sash” during graduation—you’ll have no regrets that you took the time to do it. Countless alumni say they wish they had studied abroad. My personal regret: I didn’t take a year out to be a Student Missionary after ACA. I realized too late that there was really no need to work one more year of my life! Yes, ACA deadlines have passed (Summer: April 1; Academic Year: May 1), but there’s a grace period. So, if you want to go—get moving! Especially if you need to secure a student visa. First, CAMPUS HAPPENINGS confirm you’re eligible (among other requirements, a 2.0 overall GPA, 2.5 in Spanish if applying to Spanish language campuses). Then pick up the “How to Apply” sheet outside Irwin Hall 212 (or email me to ask for a PDF at srasi@puc.edu). There’s just one important change on the instructions: you need to turn in the completed application to Jamie Herman, at Student Life, for the vice president’s signature. Finally, make sure you attend the ACA Orientation in Irwin Hall 200, Tuesday, May 15, 6-8 p.m. Questions? Email me! (srasi@ puc.edu)