Re-entry into the United States can be both challenging and as frustrating as living and studying in another culture. As a returning study abroad student, you and your family might expect everything to go smoothly as you are “going (coming) home”. In fact, re-entry is a process and you should take time to relax and to reflect on what is going on around you and how you are reacting to it. Although most study abroad students report strong positive feelings of what they have accomplished overseas, it is common to develop complex feelings and attitudes from seeing people, places, and behaviors from a different perspective. You should give yourself permission to ease into the transition, understanding that like its antecedent, reverse culture shock is normal and seldom long-lasting. If possible, have some down time at home before classes begin at Bryn Mawr.
Participating in Campus Activities at Bryn Mawr
If you want to participate in activities that are organized the previous semester, such as serving as a Hall Advisor, you can apply from abroad, although it might be easier to line up recommendations in advance. Similarly, if you want to apply for an internship or summer job when you return, you should plan ahead. You can access the Career Development resources at its website http://www.brynmawr.edu/CDO/
All study abroad participants are required to complete an evaluation at the end of their program. The evaluation materials become a permanent part of the study abroad reference materials, which future students consult for information about academic offerings and life in general at the program you attended. The Office of International Programs will also send an invitation to you to meet with other returning students at an informal welcome back gathering. We are eager to hear about your experiences and to profit from your advice.
Designed for students who have recently returned from a semester or year abroad, this conference, held in the Fall, addresses the following issues:
The Fall Reentry Conference is an event featuring many prominent guest speakers from the international arena. Contact OIP for specific details.
Although study abroad students are not required to pre-register from overseas, many register from home after their return. You may also pre-register during the first day of classes in the semester when you return. At the beginning of the semester, you should see your Dean to discuss courses, attend those classes you wish to take, and confirm them during the second week of classes. Take special care to attend the first class meeting of limited enrollment courses.
A few weeks after you return to campus, check with the Registrar to see if the transcript from your study abroad program has arrived. Credits will usually be transferred soon after your return, provided the Registrar has received your transcript.
Language in Motion (LIM), is an innovative, cooperative outreach program that provides study abroad returnees, international students, and upper-level language students with the opportunity to aid local urban and suburban K-12 teachers by creating and delivering language and culture presentations in their classrooms.
Housed in Bryn Mawr College’s Office of International Programs and inspired by the original Language in Motion program at Juniata College, LIM at Bryn Mawr began in the Spring of 2010, and has already seen presentations at several area schools to students of diverse backgrounds and varying age levels.
As Bryn Mawr’s LIM program develops, we become increasingly excited to build up the knowledge of young people in the Philadelphia area about unfamiliar cultures, traditions, and language. We also seek to open their eyes to the wonderful experience of study abroad.
Bryn Mawr College students who wish to participate in the Language in Motion program must submit an application and agree to attend a series of short workshops to prepare an effective presentation. If desired, presenters may work in pairs, and volunteers may give as few as one or as many as ten presentations during a semester. Application and scheduling forms are available by clicking on the “Forms” tab on the left side of the screen.
The Language in Motion program provides Bryn Mawr students with a unique opportunity to share their exciting international experiences with audiences that often have little if any familiarity with other languages and cultures. Bryn Mawr volunteers will find great satisfaction in making students aware of the many international opportunities they can pursue in the future—particularly the opportunity to study abroad. The Language in Motion program also offers volunteers insight into the teaching profession, and sometimes even inspires Bryn Mawr volunteers to consider teaching as a career! Volunteers also often visit schools that differ radically from their own elementary and high schools, allowing them to expand their sociological perspectives on education. Finally, every student can benefit from practicing effective public speaking skills, and LIM provides an excellent opportunity!