On any education abroad program, including those arranged through the University of Wisconsin-Platteville, matters of personal identity may impact you. You may experience being a minority in a community for the very first time, or you may receive positive or negative unwanted attention based on identity. It is essential to remember that you have control over how you respond to the attention.

Your Identity

How you identify in the U.S. may not necessarily match how you will be identified abroad. As a student of an Education Abroad program, those in the host country may first identify you as an American or citizen of the U.S. This may not be how you categorize yourself at home.

Additionally, you may see yourself as a poor college student in the U.S. However, because of your ability to travel, some people in your host country may see you as wealthy.

We encourage you to think about each of the parts that make you and your identity unique such as student type, your race or ethnicity, religious belief, socioeconomic status, gender identity, and sexual orientation.

Certain parts of your identity are more easily observable by others, such as skin color or age, but there are other parts of your identity that are harder to notice and observe, such as a being a member in a fraternity or a community volunteer.

  • Will you want to discuss these parts of your identity with people in your host country? And if so, how?
  • How would you react to an offensive comment made on an easily observable piece of your identity?
  • Remember to think about how these pieces of your identity may impact your values.
  • Will your identity change while you are completing your education abroad program?

Keep in mind that just as you have multiple parts that make up you and your identity, those in your host country do too. Do not limit them to just one identity based on something observable. Be open to their multiple identities, just as you would like them to do for you and try to learn the parts that make up the whole identity of your new friends.

In return they will learn the different pieces that make up your own personal puzzle.

Is Education Abroad for Me?

We believe there is an education abroad (EA) program for each and every student, but we understand that students often wonder, "Is education abroad right for me?"

  • EA is a great resume builder and may even open up new opportunities for graduate school, or let you stand apart compared to other job candidates.
  • With increasing globalization, it is important to have second language skills, problem-solving skills, and knowledge with a global perspective.
  • You can earn credits toward graduation through an EA program, and with some detailed planning it will not delay your graduation date.
  • As a student, you are eligible for scholarships and financial aid to assist with payment for your program.

Student Identity Resources

Contact Information

Education Abroad


0328 Warner Hall

Walk-in Hours via Zoom

Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday
2–3:30 p.m.

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