Three to four percent of the US population has passports. It’s stats like these that remind me how lucky I was to have the experience to study abroad. I’m reminded of all of this as I sit in the Pharmacy Building as part of the panel of past study abroad students. I am here in order to answer questions and offer advice to students who are studying abroad next semester. All this has really done is remind me how envious I am of 2011 Andrew!
This time a year ago I was scrambling to get in my info and prepare myself for my trip to Italy. I remember coming to this exact room and feeding off of all the words of panel members who had already experienced their time abroad. As a student I imagined what wonders I would be experiencing soon. Now as a panel member, I find myself reminiscing on the awesome experiences I ended up having.
It’s also a nice chance to give back to a program that did so much for me. It wasn’t my own force of will that got me to Italy (as much as I wish that were the case). The incredibly well coordinated efforts of the Center for Global Education were the real driving force behind my travels, with a special thanks to Sarah Barnes.
To end this post, I’ll leave you with a video that nicely encapsulates the excitement of the international community.
As various deadlines for semester in the Spring abroad approach and I scramble to stay ahead of the game, I am overwhelmed with excitement about the opportunity that awaits me.
This packet: All that stands between me and Italia
However, I can’t help but worry about the country that I hope to visit, study, and travel in as they experience many of the same burdens that other countries in the EU worry about. In fact, such problems in their market have lead to their prime minister, Berlusconi, to step down.
This means that I will be entering a country amidst an upheaval, a change in its government. Will this affect me? Or the University that I will be attending? Possibly. I can only stay informed and hope that nothing drastic happens.
I’m tempted to write this post in Italian, but I figured I would cut out your stop to Google Translate in the interest of time. Before I go on, you should know a few things about me. I’m a Creative Writing Major. My classes consist of reading literature and writing both research papers and works of fiction. Except for one class–la lingua di Italiano.
I have studied the language and culture of Italy for the past two years, and fallen in love with that boot shaped country. Professoressa Lucchi-Reister is behind the magic of the class. A native to Rome, she has worked diligently with me and my classmates to help us to enter into the historically rich culture of Italy.
In the interest of pursuing this part of my education, I plan on studying abroad there in the spring. This is a fine example of how Butler encourages its students to expand their horizons beyond their major, to develop a more holistic understanding of the world, and the communities that surround us. I’ll leave you with this short video, one my favorite examples of the idiosyncrasies of the Italian culture.