I cannot say my final goodbyes to my Pitt Plus3 Blogging Spree without thanking the primary reason for which I was able to attend: the Thomas Angelo Honors Scholarship. Thank you so much for making my dream of studying abroad and seeing China come true-I cannot thank Pitt enough. Thank you for all of the opportunities that you have provided me just in the past year, and I cannot wait to see where my international experiences take me.
I truly would not have been able to go on the adventure that was Plus3 China without receiving this scholarship, and the entire time that I was there, all I could think about was how incredibly lucky I was to experience something so unique and special with some of the most diverse, energetic, and amazing people I know. Coming into Pitt, I knew that I wanted to study Finance and economics at Pitt, with a concentration in leadership and perhaps International Business. I kept on telling myself that I would allow my experiences to lead me down the right path of eventually finalizing what I wanted to do, and earlier this year I had thought of adding Supply Chain Management to the mix because of my love for the backhand work of business. However, I was unsure about how this would play into my future potential career in the Financial Services and Consulting industry. After this trip, I can surely say that through the various companies we visited and the backhand work that we saw being done tapped into my love for entrepreneurship, and I will pursue a Supply Chain major along with my Finance coursework. Through Plus3, I was also able to fulfill my strong desire to go abroad for academic purposes, and I feel like this was a good taste of what studying abroad for a longer period of time would be like. I would love to study abroad junior year, and Shanghai is a destination that I am strongly considering due to its strong business and international offerings, as well as enabling me to push myself out of my comfort zone. I am naturally a risk taker and love to travel, but am always a little apprehensive when completely trying something new or immersing myself in a new environment, and I can say that Plus3 truly helped take me out of my comfort zone whether that be through playing around with food (being vegetarian in China was truly an experience!), meeting 23 new people and going on the adventure of a lifetime with them, or visiting companies in China and asking questions related to U.S.-China relations and hearing a firsthand perspective. This scholarship truly helped me find different facets of myself, for I was constantly pushed out of my comfort zone-something for which I will be forever grateful. My favorite part of the trip was visiting the companies with such a diverse group of people and hearing from renowned engineers, business people, and entrepreneurs, and I can tell you wholeheartedly that Pitt Business truly means it when they say “From the classroom, to the city, to the world.” I have made lifelong friends from all different disciplines and walks of life, and have grown in my world view, confidence, and knowledge about what I envision my career to be like in the future. I am seeking a dynamic, internationally-focused career in the future, and I am thankful that Plus3 China made me realize that. Apart from knowledge on the supply chain and business and engineering infrastructure, I think the most valuable thing I will take back with me is that we humans are far more similar than we are different. I think in this day and age, we are taught to believe that people who do not necessarily live in the same place as us or follow the same customs as us are different, sometimes weird, or just outright wrong. This is not the case from what I have seen. Everyone is more united than we can perceive at first glance, and sometimes it just takes a few friendly conversations with others to realize that.
Plus3 China was truly the trip of a lifetime, and I am so grateful for everyone who made the experience possible. Thank you!!