Meet Benjamin Trieu

Benjamin Trieu

Program and Location:

Summer, Poland: Biotechnology; Poznan, Poland


Biomedical Engineering

Why did you choose to study abroad?

I wanted to study abroad so that I could see a part of the world that I wouldn’t otherwise get the opportunity to. I had never traveled outside the U.S. before my trip and I really wanted to experience what I would be like to live outside the U.S.

What did you learn about yourself?

I learned that I was more independent than I thought. Learning to live in a country where you don’t speak the language was pretty daunting at first, but after a while you learn how to get around and almost feel like a local!

What was one of your favorite parts of your program?

One of my favorite parts of my trip was when we got to visit the Auschwitz Concentration Camp. It was by no means a fun time, but it was very impactful experience to see that dark part of history and learn more about what went on at those camps in hopes that nothing like that ever happens again.

What advice do you have to future study abroad students?

Advice that I have for future study abroad students would be to really take advantage of all of the opportunities you have to try new things abroad that you won’t get the chance to back at home!

Were you surprised by anything during your time abroad?

I was very surprised at how well people outside the U.S. knew English. I found that I was able to communicate with most younger Polish people just fine without knowing any Polish. And people from different nationalities such as Italians and Turkish people would talk to each other through English because everyone knew English!

Is there any advice you would give to other students who share your identity?

Apply to as many scholarships as you can! I would’ve never been able to do my trip without the help of my scholarships. NC State has tons of scholarships for study abroad that it gives out especially for students from disadvantaged backgrounds.

Would you do it again?

I would do anything to be able to study abroad again!

This post was originally published in Study Abroad.