Black Expats 2.0

For years, when it came to taking advantage of international travel, young black college grads lagged behind their peers. No more. International living is booming among millennials.

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As for me, I eventually got that passport and took my first trip abroad just a few months ago. Granted, I visited Germany, a developed and economically stable country, but I was expecting our differences to be more pronounced than just my American accent. Most people spoke excellent English, every restaurant offered English-language menus, Burger Kings littered the streets and I heard the Top 40 U.S. singles more there than I do here. And there's the irony: With technology washing globalization up on almost every shore, the digital world is more conducive for market expansion, but less exciting for travelers wanting to experience another culture. It gets even harder for young expats to cut the strings they've come to rely on that connect them to their American comfort zone, especially when those strings are now an endless network of satellites and wireless routers.

From a career perspective, however, this couldn't be better. I traveled on a fellowship that introduced me to American journalists living in Germany; they urged me to learn German so that I, too, could write for English-language publications as a foreign correspondent and be a reporter in the host country.

I think they may be on to something. Right now, I am saving up for Rosetta Stone.

Jada F. Smith is a writer in Washington, D.C., and blogs about 9-to-5 fashion at

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is an intern at The Root and senior journalism major at Howard University.