The Wonders of Travel


Ernst photo

Triton Students sit with their host family during a recent trip to Spain through the Triton Exchange Program.

Heidi Ernst, Staff Writer

It was the summer of freshman year, and our school was going on a class trip to a foreign country.  I had been up for 24 hours. As a 15 year old only knowing basic spanish was definitely one of my biggest challenges. My Spanish speaking “mother”  did not know any English. My roommate was still in Boston due to an overbooked flight, so I was all alone in Spain and was forced to speak a language where I knew only the essentials. However it turned out to be a great learning experience. 

Travel forces individuals to overcome many obstacles. In this instance the obstacle for me was the language itself. When most individuals travel the challenges they face are navigation, communication, and being willing to put yourself in vulnerable positions. Travel also opens many doors to new perspectives on culture that may differ from reading something in a magazine or even looking online. Being in an unfamiliar territory allows individuals to appreciate the new places, people, and everything that may go along with it.

Travelling is crucial to developing these fundamental skills that we use in our everyday lives. For example in every aspect of our lives we are going to need to be able to know how to travel, communicate with others and create connections with different people and endure through the awkward and character building moments.

According to the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, “those who travel and study abroad tend to be more open and emotionally stable.” There have also been studies that show the connections between travel and an increase in creativity, a deeper sense of cultural awareness and personal growth.  There is so much to see in the world and so much to explore and by traveling you are able to meet new people and create many connections, expand your mind and adapt to difficult situations. 

According to the Journal of Travel Research “It has been proposed that all travel is educational because it broadens the mind as people learn from and interpret experiences.”

Foreign experiences increase both cognitive flexibility and depth and integrativeness of thought, the ability to make deep connections between disparate forms”

— Adam Galinsky

explains Adam Galinsky, a professor at Columbia Business School who has come up with a number of studies that explore the links between creativity and international travel. 

Some people may argue against traveling due to the costs and the time and effort that goes along with doing such a thing. The common consensus is that if you’re “travelling” that your travelling outside of the country. However travelling to places such as Vermont, Maine, and other local areas around your home can still introduce you to those vulnerable positions that are necessary for growing. If you would like to see the benefits of traveling then start locally and then branch out to more diverse places.   

Have you traveled outside of the country?

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