Questions to Ask
Before choosing a location to study abroad, ask yourself these questions:
- What kind of day-to-day support do I normally receive and am accustomed to at home?
- What additional support may I need in my host country?
- What is the general attitude towards people like me in my host country?
- Have I met with the support services office at my home university?
- Have I notified my home university’s study abroad office and my program provider about my concerns?
When you think of the term “culture shock,” it’s easy to imagine a drastic outburst or surprise at something being outrageously different from what you are used to at home and the adverse reactions that may follow. However, culture shock takes on many forms. All of our TEAN staff have dealt with culture shock at one point during our travels, whether it be missing a familiar food from home or getting frustrated with local customs that are unfamiliar. In these instances, our team always falls back on one of our favorite mottos, “It’s not wrong, just different.” Having this perspective can open your eyes to lots of nuances of your host culture, allow you to reflect on your own experiences and consider why you do things the way that you do.
Meet Our Team
The entire TEAN team is here to help you prepare for an incredible time abroad. Our aim is to make you feel informed, comfortable, empowered and supported throughout every step of your journey. We also want you to feel free to reach out directly to your program manager regarding any concerns you may have relating to your health, safety or identity.
In addition, Nick Falzone is our team’s Diversity and Inclusion Coordinator and you are encouraged to use him as a resource within TEAN as well. Nick comes to TEAN from Loyola University Chicago with a BA in Psychology. He has studied abroad on several programs in Europe and has spent significant time traveling through the South Pacific with TEAN over his six years with the company. He is passionate about advocating against social injustices, racism, homophobia, xenophobia and all discriminatory social constructs. It is his priority, along with TEAN’s, to ensure students of all backgrounds have access to and are encouraged to travel, specifically through study abroad. You can email Nick at firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you see a group that you identify with not included on this list below, please let us know! The scope of diversity and disabilities is ever expanding and changing, and TEAN’s aim is to be at the forefront of this for our students.