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SaraGrace’s #VolsAbroad Experience: UT in Florence at LdM

SaraGrace Travis | Spring 2023

Photo Caption: Me & Chloe Thompson; Skiing in Swiss Alps; Interlaken, Switzerland; Traveled from Florence, Italy, to Switzerland for the weekend; Booked a trip through SmartTrips that bussed out overnight to a hostel in Interlaken.

What does the Volunteer Experience mean to you and how has your experience abroad contributed to it?

Every day I have spent in Florence, and other cities we have traveled to, I have learned that you truly can make an impact even 5,000 miles away from home. There is so much to learn & gain from going abroad in professional, cultural, personal, and spiritual ways. I have learned that the Volunteer Spirit does have the power to carry on no matter where you go, you just have to choose service & leadership in every opportunity given.

What skills or experiences have you had in your time abroad to prepare you for life beyond UT?

  • Learning to communicate in a global setting and despite language barriers – whether in the workplace or simply getting on a train
  • Planning and organizing trips (i.e. tickets/times/schedules/routes of transportation, hotel/hostel/Airbnb accommodations, activities/events going on in the city
  • Budgeting money and calculating currency exchange rates
  • Gaining time management skills, as well as coordinating communication with family, friends, advisors, and employers back home with a 6 hour time difference

More about UT in Florence at LdM>