ArgHHHH I'm tearing my hair out at this whole international exchange process. If I did something common like business or maths, everything would be over in a week, there would be hardly any meetings with important people at my university, emailing back-and-forth with multiple American universities, all the DECISIONS (x10 worse for a girl). But nooo, I have to go and do god damn Geographic Information Science, that takes an eternity to say when people ask me what I do at uni, then repeat it when they don't understand it the first time, then watch as they nod confusedly and say 'that sounds...interesting'. Not exaggerating, 9 out of 10 people do this. And I have a very BIG sample size to come to that conclusion.
I'm wondering if this is all worth the trouble. That, and the travel & accomodation fees. I spoke to some people who went on exchange to American universities and said it was the time of their life, it was the best decision they made, they had unbelievable fun and would recommend it to anyone and everyone.
I think it's gonna be worth it. I really hope so. Or else I wouldn't still want to go through with this.
At first, there was the whole 'which university do I want to go to?', then eventually the 'which university actually has GIS?', to 'which university has higher level GIS courses?', which narrowed it down to about 2 or 3 universities. Bear in mind that these universities are the ones that my uni has an exchange agreement with, not just all American universities. These are the University of Oregon, Northern Arizona University and Southern Illinois Uni Carbondale. It's looking like the UO is the one I'd go to, most likely. So, anyone know much about these ones?
So I had to look over every single GIS course these universities had, and try to match them with the courses I'm taking at my university. For those who don't know, that's how it works - the courses I take in America need to be extremely similar to the ones I'd be doing back in my university. Problem is, the American universities only have GIS minors, whereas I'd be doing my final year of my GIS major. tldr they don't have stuff advanced enough for me. But, after much deliberation, I came up with a few options that can solve this problem, all of which involve me extending my degree for another semester, which is fine by me - it won't hurt in the long run. After meeting with some of my coordinators, it seems like everything will be okay with my university, and that my options are fairly safe. Options being plural though, it's so hard to choose, none of them 'have it all', it's either decide if I wanna spend more money and have more fun there, or have a safer education, or have a more 'laid back' learning with risks.
I've also decided that I'd be going next year, Fall semester. I'd probably do some holidaying there after I finish the semester in Summer, so uh, anyone live in Oregon? :P
Anyway yes...a lot has been done for this exchange business but there's still a lot more to go, it isn't even finalised that I'm going, but god dammit I want to, and I will.