"It doesn't matter if students are going to work at McDonald's or a bank or a mortgage firm in New York, they are going to end up working with people from other countries and other cultures and they need to be able to interact with people who are different from them," Robertson says. "There are a bigger percentage of community college students who have never been abroad. They have never been outside of the country or the county and those students more than ever need this exposure."
Nineteen-year-old Carolina Palacio, who plans to graduate from Valencia College next spring with an associate degree in general studies, took a study abroad trip to London for a week during her last semester.
"In my opinion, study abroad is the best classroom, because you get to experience things firsthand," says Palacio, who hopes to pursue a bachelor's degree in journalism or international relations. "It's worth it. There is nothing better than having that experience and being able to say, 'Wow, I’m here.'"
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