COLUMN: Traveling is the best way to fuel your curiosity, so take the chance

I grew up learning the importance of experiencing and travelling to new places. There is no greater feeling than being in a completely different place and appreciating a contrasting culture from your own.

Maggie Doheny is a sophomore journalism major at MU. She is an opinion columnist who writes about women’s rights.

Growing up, my family took at least one trip every year. Typically, it was somewhere we had never been together unless it was a vacation that included my extended family. For most of my life, I had never fully understood that not every family makes the effort or has the opportunity to explore somewhere new every year. When I was in grade school, I talked to my parents about how weird it was that some of my friends had not gone on a trip in a while. They explained to me that each family is different, placing priorities on certain hobbies.

That was the same age that I really began to appreciate my parents for taking us somewhere new every year. Now, one of my favorite times of the year is when we go on our family trip in the summer. I have found a significant passion for travel, loving each new place I am lucky to go to. This passion may never have been ignited if my parents did not make the effort to emphasize the importance of being curious.

Travel has so many social benefits. Going somewhere one has never been before teaches them about new cultures and how to respect those cultures. When I went to Paris, I had to adapt to a whole new way of living, specifically with a typical Parisian dining experience. By going to the place these cultures exist, one can gain an understanding of different perspectives of life.

Not only can one learn to appreciate a new culture, but one receives the opportunity to see the Earth’s true beauty. I grew up in Kentucky, so when I went to Yosemite I had never seen a mountain so tall or felt the mist from a waterfall. The moments that happen by connecting with the Earth are unlike any other.

My favorite part of going somewhere new, is the ability to learn the history of the place in the present, while imagining a future there as well. Walking the streets of New York, one can appreciate the beautiful view of the Statue of Liberty. At that point, envisioning an older version of oneself, living the largest dreams. A new place holds the connection between past and future unlike anything else. With the curiosity of exploration comes hope and excitement for anything to happen.

This is why travel is so important to me, because it allows people to become more than themselves. With choosing to learn more about the world and people comes the effort to get out of one’s comfort zone. Traveling allows one to learn more about themselves than they would ever know.

I am grateful to my family for giving me this appreciation for travel. In fact, there is no one else I would rather explore these new places with. Who one experiences these new places with is as important as where they go. There is no better way to bond other than seeing the world in all of its beauty with people that you love.

My dad always told me to be curious in everything that I do, whether it is school, activities, people or places. This is why I attend college in Missouri from Kentucky. College gives me the opportunity to explore a whole new state. I plan to expand that curiosity by travelling abroad at some point during my studies.

The Mizzou Study Abroad program has so many options for students to choose from. There are almost 60 countries to choose from, depending on major and what type of studying abroad that student plans to do. I hope to do an internship through the journalism study abroad program.

I encourage everyone to take chances and go places that are unknown. There truly is nothing more enriching than feeding curiosity. There is no way to know what could be found or how that may shape each individual person into their best selves. Explore as much as possible and embrace the moments of hope that come with it.

Edited by Roshae Hemmings | rhemmings@themaneater.com

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