Tagged: study abroad

10 Apr

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A Life Changing Experience

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El Calor de Marruecos

You’ve probably seen all the flyers, the articles, and the ads for studying abroad. You may have even complained about those people who talk non-stop about their experiences abroad. Well, I have to confess that it will not stop. Once you study abroad, life becomes more exciting, and speaking about it is the only way to travel back. However, there is a reason to all this madness; otherwise, I would not be writing this to annoy you even more.

Lily in the sunStudying abroad is a life changing experience. While studying abroad in Granada, Spain, I realized something: there is a difference between vacationing and actually living somewhere. When visiting a country for vacation, you do not get to experience the culture, the places, and the people. A majority of vacation time is spent visiting the touristy places and ordering food similar to our own. While living in Granada for almost five months, I immersed myself in the culture, so that by the end of the experience, I felt I was part of the Spanish culture. Besides the touristy places, I visited the local area and met local people. I spoke Spanish 24/7 with my host mom and I ate authentic Spanish food which was a huge plus. Most importantly, I had the opportunity to understand another country’s government, social problems, and traditions.

Why is this important? Learning to understand and interact with a different culture helps us to work better in a diverse environment. The ability to speak a different language helps you to become more aware of the world. In other words, you will become worldly and more marketable.

Embracing differences is rarely negative; in fact, it often strengthens and broadens our knowledge and skills. Another positive about studying abroad is that it teaches you to appreciate other cultures. I always knew I wanted to study abroad. Learning about other cultures always fascinated me. When I went to Spain, I was open to experience something different than my own. In fact, while in Granada, I participated in the University theater group, I volunteered in a senior center, I took flamenco classes, and on top of that, I was a full-time student at the university. The result: the best experience of my life so far.

Footprints

Studying abroad will ultimately enrich you with adventures and a great sense of independence. One thing I discovered in my journey abroad was my identity. There were many times when I reflected about my life, my goals, and where I was heading. I am clearer on where I want to go now. It was a journey full of surprises, challenges, and happiness.

Do not be afraid of the unknown. Go to the Study Abroad Office and learn more about what they offer. Search programs and talk to your relatives. Who knows, next year you might be on a plane going abroad for an amazing journey!


Liliana Peralta-Zapata, class of 2014, is a public relations major with a double minor in theatre and Hispanic studies from the Bronx, New York.

06 Mar

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Being a Tourist in London

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Weaver at Chelsea Football ClubHello loyal readers,

The past two weeks have been relatively hectic, but I am finally done with my first set of term assignments. I have also started constructing my final papers which are due at the end of term today. What have I been up to you might ask? Besides editing and revising my assignments, I have been embarking on a few exciting adventures.

I recently took a tour of the Chelsea Football Club, and no, this is not American Football.  I got to go out near the pitch and learn about how football began. Although I am not an avid fan, it was an amazing experience to see a stadium of such magnitude in London.

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27 Feb

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Canals, Cannolis, and Carnevale: My Weekend Journey to Venice!

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View from the Grand Canal during the Vaporetto del Arte tour

Mount student Jillian Torre is currently studying abroad in London, England for the spring 2013 semester.

One of my favorite things about living in London is its proximity to everywhere else in Europe. Where else in the world are there so many different cultures, all with their own unique history, sandwiched into such a small geographical space? I came here fully intent on seeing as many of the world’s greatest cities as possible, and blowing every last cent in the process. I quickly booked trips to Italy, Scotland, Paris, Greece, and Ireland. I didn’t expect the start of my travels to come so quickly, but sure enough, Venice has come and gone.

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06 Feb

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Dancing in Dublin, Sailing through Stonehenge, and Basking in Bath

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S. Weaver at Stonehenge, Circus

Guilty as charged. I apologize for not writing to all of you last week. It was a crazy one. I got home from Dublin on Monday and ran to my Shakespeare lecture on Richard II (it is not my favorite Shakespearean piece, but it is a perfect example of a history play). This week was paper week for me. I wrote two seven-page papers, and while I enjoyed writing them, it’s refreshing to have a little bit of a break to edit them before they are due in two weeks. I apologize, I am forgetting myself. Let me tell you about Dublin.

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30 Jan

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Study Abroad in Reading, Week 1

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Mount Saint Mary College student Stephanie Weaver in England

Since I last posted on the Knight Life blog, I have been on some pretty exciting adventures. During my first week at the University of Reading, I attended a lecture on Shakespeare presented by Professor Andrew Gurr, a Shakespearean expert, and my first series of seminars for my Romantics to Decadents Nineteenth Century Poetry class. The class structure is extremely different from life at the Mount, but I am quickly growing accustomed to listening in lecture and speaking during seminar. I have joined the newspaper staff at Reading and will be writing for their travel section while in the UK. In order to begin constructing my first set of thesis papers, I’ve already maxed out on library books taken out in one week. Currently, I am reading Hamlet with a nice cup of tea as I sit to write to you all.

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