How to feel like you’re studying abroad even if you’re stuck in Berkeley

Lauren Glasby/File

It’s spring semester, otherwise known as the semester when junior humanities majors flee from Berkeley to Europe so they can get cultured and knock out the international studies breadth requirement. If you’re like us at the Clog, then your Instagram feed is also clogged with abroad pictures. For those of us stuck in Berkeley, here are some helpful tips to feel as though you, too, are studying abroad.

Start hanging out at the International House

Head over to I-House, grab some yummy tater tots and keep your ears wide open for hearing any foreign languages. Once you detect even the slightest accent, pounce. That person is your new best friend. They will be your gateway to the I-House community, which is also your new community.

Wear a full-on ~outfit~

We don’t know if you’ve noticed, but that girl that you’ve only seen in sweatpants is suddenly wearing some variation of a fur coat, a dress, tights and Doc Martens every day. We can only assume that this is a strategy to both assimilate to the European culture and be ready at any moment for an Instagram-worthy photo op. Therefore, we advise you to dress to impress seven days a week. We understand that this involves a lifestyle change and a major shopping spree, but it is vital to living like you’re abroad.

Take a picture of every meal you eat

This is essential to the study abroad experience. Make sure to document every subpar latte and GBC burrito you ever buy! There is no meal too boring to chronicle. If you are especially committed to the experience, post every photo to an album on Facebook titled “Abroad 2019 [insert emoji of your choice here].”

Distance yourself from your friends

One of the perks of studying abroad is that you get a whole new slew of friends, so we recommend that you mute your group chat and search for a new group of friends, perhaps at I-House? If your old friends are begging you to hang out, insist that you all meet up in another country. That way, it’s convenient for everyone!

Drink a bottle of rosé in People’s Park

It might not be the Eiffel Tower or the Park Güell, but it does have its own charm. It is, in fact, a local tourist attraction! This is the perfect spot to hang out with your new cultured friends and take some cute pictures for the ‘gram.

Get lost in Dwinelle

Head on over to Dwinelle Hall! The mind-boggling layout and the building’s ability to ensure that you get lost mimic the experience of exploring a new country. Additionally, if you ask anyone for directions, they’ll be incredibly unhelpful or simply shoot you a dirty look, which is similar enough to being treated as a dumb American tourist!

Trade in your Juul for a good, old-fashioned cigarette

Nothing says “I’m cultured now” like destroying your lungs. Lighting up outside Beta Apple Pie is the perfect Berkeley equivalent to smoking on the streets of Paris.

So Bears, don’t be sad that you aren’t off in Europe living your best life as a study abroad student. Berkeley can still be a place of wonders and adventures. Follow our steps to a life of studying abroad even when you’re in Berkeley.

Contact Elena Cavender at [email protected].