A ferry docks into downtown Seattle. (Photo by <a href="https://www.flickr.com/photos/pasfam/16777186/in/photolist-gNkca-2Y9v2o-3eCoCD-5ZaaWV-8WRrQi-2fUx45-2tZgQ-fpmXvB-e1Cqhx-8JURMU-cN5NoC-NcQX3-a3S7Jm-9FZirj-8WUsbo-4FrAHU-8JUVdL-a8jC9n-eCe3u8-4FzgBN-e3GxNx-cK6EhN-cK6Cgw-awQQe2-dRZSbP-ay57rw-868JWo-dU6Tpt-4X3irM-ebGT4P-ebPyCw-4zVnNK-8DbZKL-asQqKu-7QuvvX-8sEowx-cBCGZC-fpmAKH-7SHWVt-cD97Fy-6uNuFD-6HLSU1-4QgLch-8jsMmN-9He6oi-8K4tQ2-e3GyCZ-51VcwQ-5nBSp7-abZDgo" target="_blank">Paul Schultz via Flickr</a>)

A ferry docks into downtown Seattle. (Photo by Paul Schultz via Flickr)

For many of us Washingtonians, ferries conjure up sentimental thoughts of trips to the San Juan Islands or images of ferries humming along Puget Sound with the Seattle skyline or Olympic Mountains behind them.

But the recent ferry accident in South Korea killing almost 300 passengers and another capsizing in Bangladesh remind us that as safe as we may feel on a ferry deck looking at the water go by, there is potential for disaster just like any other means of transportation.

A Japanese-American-owned Liberaty Flower Shop at Pike Place Market, ca.1931. By fall of 1907, nearly 80% of the stalls were operated by Japanese farmers. The photo is part of the "Grit" exhibit at the Wing Luke Museum. (Photo courtesy of Washington State Historical Society)

A Japanese-American-owned Liberaty Flower Shop at Pike Place Market, ca.1931. By fall of 1907, nearly 80% of the stalls were operated by Japanese farmers. The photo is part of the “Grit” exhibit at the Wing Luke Museum. (Photo courtesy of Washington State Historical Society)

From Olympia to Mukilteo, Bremerton to Snoqualmie, Western Washington museums have banded together for Museum Week Northwest, a celebration of museums beginning May 16.

Author Hannah Langlie on her visit to Paris. (Photo courtesy of Hannah Langlie)

Author Hannah Langlie on her visit to Paris. (Photo courtesy of Hannah Langlie)

What do I pack? Where will I stay? Do I have to learn a foreign language?

These are just some of the questions that many students who study abroad are left to ponder when deciding to apply for this once-in-a-lifetime experience.

But what happens when you add questions like these:

Is the hotel accessible? How will I get support services in my host country? What happens to support services at home if I’m gone for an extended time? What happens if my wheelchair breaks down or I need to go to the doctor? Will I be allowed to fly alone? Will my host family accept me for who I am?