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Journals from Telemark University College, Norway

2010-01-05 Experiences & Conclusions

I am leaving very soon, and the more I think about it, the sadder I get. When you study abroad you meet new people, experience new things, live in a new culture, and you become a new person. Through this whole experience I have fallen in love with Norway and the culture. It is a country that is so welcoming to Americans, and allows us to be who we want to be. I had traveled to other countries and received some hostility and unfriendliness all due to the fact that I was American. The towns and cities are very small compared to the United States, and the town B was the cutest little town and I feel really gave you a true image of Norwegian culture. The Norwegians are very quiet people and very private but once you open up and really put your self out there, they are very loyal and honest people. I have met some people who I know will be my best friends for life. You also get to look at the United States from a another perceptive and you learn a lot about other countries and why they think of Americans and the states the way they do. While being in Norway I was shocked at how the Norwegians knew so much about our politics and I knew nothing of theirs or any other county in Europe. They are aware of all our recent news and its all over their televisions. And you get to see how another country does things. Examples are their education systems and health care. I was so impressed that education is free in Norway. The kids I went to school with did not have to pay for college, only living expenses. (They do pay for it essentially in taxes). And whenever my friends had to go to the doctor they just kept the receipt and turned it into the school and got their money back. It was just amazing how things are very different within cultures. You get a chance to experience it and see it with your own eyes which was a privilege for me. Janys Olsen

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