Grading in My Favor

Pamela Gudobba Majors: Japanese and Global International Studies Program: Ritsumeikan University, Japan Exams in Japan were definitely not what I expected them to be. Leading into exam season, I assumed I would have a lot of late-night study sessions where I tried to memorize the intimidating amount of the vocabulary and kanji I had been…

Battle of the Mud Buckets

Max Wicklund Major: Film, Video, and Media Studies Program: Business and Culture in Thailand While our group was in route to Chicago to board our 15-hour flight to Hong Kong, we had a startling realization that a time delay for our flight meant we would miss the flight to Bangkok, leaving us stranded in Hong…

Knowledge, Growth, and Perspectives

Amanda Kuszak Major Work: Social Work Health & Permaculture in Guatemala, Spring Break The beauty of Guatemala had been surreal, to say the least. Geographically the country is breathtaking and culturally it is friendly and generous. I had been taken back by the warm welcome our group received in each city we visited. Every person…

Top 10 Observations of Lisbon, Portugal

Kara VanderKamp Major: Pre-Special Education: Elementary Global Ambassadors in Portugal 2019 1. There are 3 things to smell: cigarette smoke, cologne, and pastries 2. Even if the bus or elevator is full, you can still fit 5 more people 3. The national bird of Portugal is the rooster, but should be a pigeon 4. Every…

Thriving in Tokyo

Elizabeth Riegler Major: Psychology and Japanese Doshisha University, AY 18-19 Recently, I traveled to Tokyo! I stayed in Shibuya, which is the youth and fashion capital of Tokyo. If you’ve ever seen a photo or news story talking about Japanese fashion, chances are it was either taken in Shibuya or Harajuku, which is just a…

Don’t Touch My Throne

Maria Carson Major: Japanese and Geography Nihon University, 2019 Before leaving for Japan, I worked at the study abroad office at Western. For the past year I have heard about the W curve that represents the stages of culture shock when a student is abroad. While I believe that my time working at the office…

The Time I Stumbled Upon a Cult

Grace Gettig Major: Global and International Studies & Japanese Daito Bunka University, AY 18-19 Don’t you hate it when you get all excited to go to church, excited to praise The Lord, and you accidentally end up at a doomsday cult meeting instead? I mean, it happens to the best of us. Even me. During…

IndiBroncos 2018 – Day 5: Gratitude is the Theme

Hilary Johnson Major: Social Work and Alcohol & Drug Abuse Social Justice in India, Fall 2018   Today marks one week that we have been in India. As you can imagine, it is difficult to put our experience into words. Our days have been filled with song, dance, presentations, tours, introductions, adventures and lots of…

The Roller Coaster called Culture Shock

Lauren LaLonde Major: Political Science and Spanish CIEE: Cuban Studies-University of Havana, Fall 2018. Let’s get real about culture shock. It’s inevitable, it happens on every trip, and to everyone. For some reason though, I think it’s easy for me and many others to adopt the mindset of “oh, I’ve traveled a lot so I’ll be…

El Machismo

Lauren LaLonde Major: Political Science and Spanish CIEE: Cuban Studies-University of Havana, Fall 2018. The United States has faced issues with gender equality since the beginning of its existence, and at this very moment we are facing some fairly difficult challenges with women being viewed equally in our society.  However, there are also a lot…

Language in Europe

Nick Talamantez Major: Film, Video and Media Studies Non-WMU: Sol Education, Granada, Spain, Fall 2018 The past couple weeks traveling through Germany, France, and Spain have taught me a lot. I particularly wanted to talk about language. I always hear about how English is the second most spoken language in the world. What I did…

Be Here Now

Kelsey Dovico Fulbright U.S. Student Program: Teaching Assistant Madrid, Spain, 2018-2019 Transitioning to life in a foreign country without wi-fi to cushion or distract my disorientation was challenging exercise in mindfulness. Without e-mail to check, Facebook to peruse, research to poke through, or indeed, the ability to post to this blog, I was completely available…