Hi, I'm a rising sophomore and a geology major who's looking into different semester abroad programs. There are two that I'm interested in, one in Denmark and one in New Zealand. The one in NZ is an extremely good program for geology, involving research projects, field camp (which is a great resume booster in geo), and good geology courses. The program in Denmark, meanwhile, doesn't offer any courses that I could count towards my major, but they look very enjoyable. This isn't a huge deal for me, as I can still easily graduate in 4 years with either program.
The problem is that I'm very interested in the Denmark program because the possibility of studying abroad in Europe excites me a lot. I love the idea of being able to live on such a multicultural continent for 5 months, where a ferry or train ride that lasts a few hours can take me to cultures and landscapes that are nothing like what I've just left or ever seen. Besides that, the classes look pretty fun. They are related to geology and environmental science, but they wouldn't add much to my transcript. The New Zealand program, however, would look fantastic. I would be doing things that would look very appealing to grad schools and potential employers. Most importantly, it would include field camp, which costs thousands of dollars through most programs, but wouldn't cost me anything extra because my college covers expenses for programs abroad. I also think it would give me a lot of good experience and networking opportunities, being surrounded by fellow geology students and immersed in a geo-focused environment. But New Zealand is an island nation in the middle of the Pacific, with nothing nearby except Australia. I would be getting a great education, but the spirit of study abroad, multiculturalism, and broadening my world view wouldn't be present. I would like it, but I don't think I would enjoy it as much as Denmark.
I can't do undergrad research during school, it just doesn't work with my schedule. I do intend to do a research based internship next summer, so I should still have some experience either way. My grades thus far have been very good, and I imagine they won't be too bad in the future, either. So regardless of what I do, I should still look alright to grad schools/employers. Right now I plan to work after graduation and then maybe (very likely if my mindset is the same as it is now) apply for graduate school a few years later. Still, I might change my mind by the time I reach senior year, so I want to act in a way that benefits either plan. So, would it be better for me to go for the more "fun" option or the one that looks better on resumes and applications?