The Option

I need to flesh my study abroad plans out soon. I’ve already missed the priority deadline for the application process for Tokyo this fall, but I purposely didn’t apply because my overall GPA could be counted on less than 2 fingers. (As of right now, a 3.868 GPA for the fall semester has boosted my overall GPA to a full 2.0, and once I get the two bad semesters bankrupted I’ll be sitting somewhere around 3.4.) That’s not to say Tokyo is completely out of the picture – the absolute deadline is March 1 – but that does mean I need to start looking at contingency plans in case there isn’t any room left. Looking at things now I see two possibilities (among others):

1) Go in the fall of 2010 instead. No big deal.
Advantage: I get all the way through the 300 level Japanese classes and go over a little bit more prepared.
Disadvantage: In a sandbox for 12 weeks, taking classes in English, and staying in a dorm that is by several accounts a couple steps above squalid. I get the feeling it’s the kind of program where you’re a glorified tourist who takes classes in between sightseeing.

2) Scrap Tokyo and go to Sapporo instead in the spring of 2010.
Advantage: It’s a 9 month program, and Sapporo is closer to Nebraska in terms of weather, except the temperatures don’t go near to the extremes in Sapporo as they do here at home.
Disadvantage: The 9 months are April to December. This means I can’t take spring 2010 classes at UNL because I won’t finish them, rendering me idle for three full months. I could, however, spend that time working.

Right now I’m leaning toward the latter, but we’ll see.

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