2022~2023 Study Abroad

 GPE 4  LIN,SI-TANG (林思棠) 

In this rare opportunity, I decided to embark on a life-changing journey by choosing Poland as my exchange country and majored in International Relations at the University of Warsaw. I was classified as an 'Erasmus program student', so most of the courses I took were under this program but related to Political Science, which I am going to elaborate my experience in the following paragraph.

Friends I met in Warsaw

This unique combination of historical charm and contemporary vibrancy ensures that students at the University of Warsaw are not only engaged academically but also have ample opportunities for recreation and cultural immersion. Nestled amidst the historic Old Town and the enchanting Nowy Świat, which emerges as a culinary haven, ensuring that students never experience a dull moment after class. The study-life balance is seamlessly woven into the fabric of daily life, creating an environment where learning extends beyond the confines of the lecture hall and becomes an integral part of the overall student experience. The seasonal transition in Warsaw presents a fascinating contrast that took me a while to fully grasp and appreciate. The city's distinctive vibe undergoes a transformative shift between winter and spring, offering a nuanced and dynamic experience that added depth to my time abroad.

Speaking of learning experience, one course that left a lasting impression was the Creative Thinking workshop, which deviated from conventional lecture-based teaching methods. Instead, it emphasized communication, interaction, and imagination, offering a refreshing break and transformed the classroom into a collaborative space where diverse international perspectives converged, which departed from the conventional educational approaches I had encountered in Taiwan. Under the guidance of a dedicated professor, I gained valuable insights, solutions, and perspectives while engaging with diverse international peers. The course's unconventional methods shaping not only my approach to problem-solving but also influencing my broader perspective on the potential of unconventional teaching methods in fostering personal and intellectual development.

Traveling to ​Finland

Furthermore, during my exchange year in Poland, I uncovered two profoundly transformative insights that extended far beyond the classroom. Firstly, the value of cultural diversity became vividly apparent as I immersed myself in a rich tapestry of traditions and customs. Living in a foreign country, I had the privilege of experiencing firsthand the beauty of differences, leading me to become more open-minded and broadening my worldview. The interactions with local students and participation in cultural events further enriched my overall exchange experience. The occasional challenges of navigating a new language and cultural nuances added an element of adventure and adaptability to my journey. Secondly, the journey of self-discovery was equally profound. Removed from the familiar surroundings of home, I was compelled to confront my strengths and weaknesses, adapt to new circumstances, and make independent decisions. This process encouraged self-reflection, allowing me to unearth my core values, priorities, and hidden talents.

Poland may not be as commonly considered as some other destinations, there are several compelling reasons why I choosing Poland for a study abroad experience and recommended it as a hidden gem. One notable aspect is stability and affordability are key factors that make Poland an attractive destination for exchange programs. The country offers a stable socio-political environment, ensuring a conducive atmosphere for academic pursuits. Additionally, the cost of living and tuition fees in Poland are often more affordable compared to other European countries, making it an economically viable choice for students seeking quality education without breaking the bank. Another unique advantage is the relatively lower number of Asian students compared to some other countries. This presents an excellent opportunity for international students to immerse themselves in an English-speaking environment. Exploring the hidden treasures of Poland could open doors to a transformative and unforgettable period of study abroad.

Capital of Israel:Jerusalem

Last but not least, an exchange year wouldn't be complete without traveling and exploring another country. And my visit to Israel was a highlight, as the origin of the three most leading religions, this country is full of culture and history. A poignant moment during our visit coincided with Soldier Memorial Day, witnessing people from diverse backgrounds coming together to pay their respects and mourn for soldiers and war victims was a powerful testament to human unity. This visit also prompted me to gain a more objective perspective on the complex geopolitical situation in the region, particularly concerning the Hamas invasion at the end of October,2023. Witnessing the aftermath and understanding the historical context of the conflict fueled my interest in delving deeper into the matter. As a result, I am planning to conduct a more in-depth research report on the Hamas invasion, aiming to comprehensively explore its impact and implications.

In retrospect, studying abroad has been a multifaceted journey of discovery, offering abundant rewards that extend far beyond the academic realm. It has been a transformative chapter that has not only equipped me with a deeper understanding of political economics but has also shaped me into a more culturally aware, adaptable, and globally conscious individual. As I conclude this chapter, I carry forward a wealth of experiences and insights that will undoubtedly influence my future endeavors and contribute to a lifelong commitment to embracing the complexities and richness of our global community.