Meet Ashton Crump
Program and Location:
NC State Prague: Classic Fall; Prague, Czech Republic
Education – Middle Grades Science
Why did you choose to study abroad?
I decided to spend my fall semester in Prague because I wanted to immerse myself in something new. Before coming to Prague, I had never been out of the US. After having such an amazing study abroad experience, I learned about so many different cultures, languages, and even got the chance to visit numerous other countries in Europe as well.
What did you learn about yourself?
I learned that you have to just go for it sometimes! Whether that be getting a last-minute plane ticket to a county you’ve never heard of, or trying to pronounce a Czech dish and embarrassing yourself, you just have to enjoy your time in the present! I learned that while I may have been timid before, once you’ve been abroad and struggled through pronouncing Czech words in a restaurant, you might as well try your best and go for it either way!
What was one of your favorite parts of your program?
One of my fondest memories from my time in Prague was visiting the Christmas markets with my newfound friends. We spend many nights during our last few weeks there checking out the handmade gifts from the booths, drinking hot cider, and eating Trdelnik (a delicious pastry found in Prague). We bought gifts for our friends and families back home and enjoyed our last weeks together and in Prague! The lights and decorations were magical and it still remains one of my favorite memories from my time there.
What advice do you have for future study abroad students?
Take risks! Be safe, seeing as you are in a new and unknown place, but don’t be afraid to put yourself out there and try new things! Visit as many places and see as many things as possible, because you never know when you’ll get the opportunity again!
How did your study abroad experience prepare you for your future career?
In terms of how my study abroad experience in Prague will be applied to my future career as an educator, I am looking forward to applying what I have learned about patience and understanding. The language barriers, diversity, and different cultures have provided me the opportunity to grow in how I work to understand and learn as a future educator. With such abundantly diverse classrooms, these skills will be ones I most definitely apply to my classrooms in the years to come when working with both students, parents, and other colleagues.
Would you do it again?