Returnees

Welcome back to UCSB!

We hope you enjoyed your UCEAP experience!  Now that you’re back, there are many ways for you to stay involved with UCSB EAP.  Check out the need-to-know information below for a successful transition back to campus and for ways to build upon your experience abroad.

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Important Reminders

Academic Information

Now that your UCEAP program has ended, be sure that you understand how the process for the following important items works for you.  View the Credits & Grades section for details on the topics listed below:

Final Grades - When will they appear in GOLD?
Course Registration - What should I consider regarding this process?
Major/Minor/GE Credits - Do I need to petition for these requirements?
Residence Requirement - Will I fulfill this in order to graduate on time?

Logistical Information

Clear your financial accounts in your UCEAP Portal and BARC
Make sure that you have a $0 balance on both accounts.  Existing balances will result in a variety of holds and blocks on your grades, registration and graduation status.  It takes time for holds and blocks to be removed, so get any remaining balances resolved today.

Mandatory UC Student Health Insurance Plan (UC SHIP)
Enrollment in UC SHIP is automatic unless you have an approved waiver on file with Student Health.  Have questions?  Need to submit a waiver?  Check out the SHS UC SHIP webpage for details.

Current contact information in GOLD
Now that you’re back at UCSB, be sure to update your local mailing address and phone number.

Housing needs
If you’re still looking for housing or have availability in your apartment, view and/or post listings on the UCSB Community Housing Office Rental Listings.

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Re-Entry Shock

Readjusting to Life After Study Abroad

Re-entry shock, also referred to as reverse culture shock, is REAL and it is NORMAL.  85% of people returning from abroad have some kind of difficulty with re-entry.  If you are having difficulty re-adjusting to life in the U.S., you are not alone.

Difficulty re-adjusting might include:

  • Restlessness
  • Rootlessness
  • Depression
  • Boredom
  • Uncertainty and/or confusion about the future
  • Changes in life goals and priorities
  • Alienation, isolation, wanting to be alone
  • Others don't seem to understand you
  • Negativity or intolerance toward the U.S., including common behaviors, attitudes, and customs
  • Reverse homesickness: missing people, places, attitudes or lifestyles of your host country

How is it different than culture shock?

Re-entry shock can be surprising and challenging in a different way.  You expect to go through an adjustment period when living in a new country.  You don't expect to need to re-adjust to life in your home country.  You don't realize how much you've grown and changed until you return home.

Tips for re-adjustment:

  • Be flexible and expect the unexpected
  • Let yourself be sad and miss the people and places that you left
  • Read up on current events from abroad
  • Get involved with international organizations or clubs
  • Give yourself time to reflect on how this experience has changed you
  • Focus on the positive ways you have grown because of the experiences you had and what you have learned
  • Keep a journal of your observations, memories and reflections - and don't forget to keep a sense of humor!
  • Accept that you have changed and things won't be the same as when you left - and that's OK!
  • Don't isolate yourself - stay involved with activities that you enjoy!
  • Give yourself TIME!

Who can I talk to about my experiences abroad?

Even though your experiences abroad may have been transformative, some friends or family may tune you out when you want to talk about it with them.  This is a very common experience - don't take it personally.  Here are a couple of things you can do instead:

  • Meet up with people who have had similar experiences, such as international students or other returnees, to share your experiences, frustrations and joys
  • Share your experience with others who are eager to hear about it: volunteer to talk to other students who are interested in studying abroad

Check out the UCSB EAP Events page to learn more about workshops and opportunities for returnees.

If you are experiencing significant difficulty with re-entry, seek out professional help.  You can make an appointment with Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS) or access 24/7 phone counseling by calling 805-893-4411.

Questions to reflect upon:

  • Did you come in contact with new and different values, beliefs or attitudes during your time abroad that resonate with you?
  • What values, beliefs and attitudes from home do you continue to identify with? 
  • In what ways do your new values, beliefs and attitudes conflict with your old ones?
  • In what ways can your old values, beliefs and attitudes be redefined and integrated with the new in your daily activities, interactions and relationships?
  • Are there any old values, beliefs or attitudes that you feel you need to give up? How would that affect your daily life and relationships?

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Photo Contest

Be sure to enter our annual photo contest.  Details will be posted here when available.

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Post-Graduate Opportunities

View the Life After UCSB packet for information regarding:

  • Working and interning abroad
  • Graduate schools abroad
  • Teaching English abroad
  • U.S.-based international careers
  • Creating a job search portfolio
  • Informational interviews

Hear from 3 fellow UCSB EAP alumni about the paths they pursued after graduation and the impact of their UCEAP experience.

UCSB EAP Alumni Stories:
S
aul (Jordan and Thailand)

UCSB EAP Alumni Stories:
Alessia (France)

UCSB EAP Alumni Stories:
Sam (Jordan)

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Staying Involved with UCSB EAP

Join the UCSB Education Abroad Program Alumni Group on LinkedIn!

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