Teddy Bilodeau: Post 1

Teddy Bilodeau
Provider: IES
Vienna, Austria
2023 Spring

One of the driving factors that led me to study abroad was stepping outside of my comfort zone. I knew no one in my program, or whom would be studying on Vienna for that matter. I would have no other option than to go out of my way and have conversations with complete strangers, hopefully meeting some friends along the way. Fortunately, I have met some life-long friends so far, which reminds me of my freshman year at Hampden-Sydney where I found myself in the same position. Studying abroad has always been appealing to me since I was younger, but for a time I did not think I would end up having the opportunity to do so. Thanks to the help from our study abroad office on campus this goal of mine turned into a reality. After searching through the various programs H-SC endorses, I finally decided to apply for and attend a Business, Economics, and International Relations program through IES in Vienna, Austria. When I tell people I am studying In Vienna, many of them are surprised given it is not a typical destination to study abroad compared to a city in Spain or Italy, for example. So instinctively everyone’s next question is usually along the lines of “So why Vienna?” The answer to this question lies within a few reasons. The program in which I would choose would give me the opportunity to take classes I was interested in and excited about. Aside from the academic reasoning, Vienna is filled with an insanely rich history which I found fascinating. And being abroad for an entire semester also comes with plenty of travel time. Vienna’s central location in Europe makes weekend travel much easier in terms of time and cost than many other places I was considering.

St. Stephen’s Cathedral