My kid is studying abroad
In 2012, our youngest left the nest to test his wings as a college freshman at Tulane University in New Orleans. While I was delighted that our college visits, essays and application fees were over and the right school had “picked” him, the thought of my son, Jeremy, traveling 500 miles from home had me rather weepy (for months).
And alas, he has had a wonderful two years—excellent grades, lots of new friends from all over the country, opportunities to be in “second lines” and only one hurricane (a story for another time.) And, although the house is a little too quiet for us, on the bright side, my grocery bill took a lovely downward dive without one hungry boy and all his friends (who regularly arrived early and often). And my laundry loads were cut in half. Whoever believes that boys don’t frequent the laundry chute as much as girls is ill-informed!
So fast forward to 2014—those first year anxieties are back, at least for me, as we prepare to send him to Copenhagen, Denmark for his fall semester abroad. With a double major in environmental studies and international development, Copenhagen was a perfect choice since Denmark is one of the most environmentally advanced nations in the world. Of course, it didn’t hurt his decision when Google searches consistently noted that most of the city’s young women look like they just stepped off a fashion week runway.
As parents, we are thrilled that he will study through a well-established program like DIS, which offers a challenging academic program and a chance to really immerse himself in the Danish culture. Additionally, the opportunities to travel within the continent are exciting and affordable—especially while still young enough to enjoy a youth hostel (his choice) rather than a 5-star hotel (my choice).
With tech advances and gadgets, we are staying in touch with Jeremy via texts and Skype—so that makes the distance a little more palatable. And, he has applied to be an official DIS blogger, which will allow our family and friends to keep up with his adventures.
And, yes, we have booked our trip to visit him, which will allow me to give him a real hug not just a virtual one.
Stay tuned for a Danish travelogue this fall and a photo of the Little Mermaid—who is apparently really little!
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About the Author
Linda Williger, health enews contributor, is a public affairs manager for Advocate Health Care. She loves spending time with her family, enjoying a good book and spending time outdoors, from music festivals in the park to Saturday morning walks.