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…

Some Thoughts Before Leaving to Study Abroad

Brock Notter Major: Finance and Economics Saint Louis University Madrid, Fall 2018 How did you decide the location of your study abroad?  What factors played a role  in your decision? The biggest determent of location was the ability to transfer 3000 and 4000 level courses back to Western to count toward a second major. Being a senior, I was very limited in my choices because I had already fulfilled…

Getting Accustomed To A New Place

Taylor Pace Major: Journalism University College Dublin, National University of Ireland, Dublin Fall 2018 Alright so starting off from the get-go. I arrived to Ireland on August 31 around 4:30 a.m. It was a long flight, but by the time I walked outside of the airport and realized I would be in this beautiful country…

Here’s to Not “No”ing

Annika Ehrig Major: Spanish and Sales and Business Marketing CIMBA, Fall 2018 Gate Attendant: “Are you Ehrig?!” Me: “Yes?” Gate Attendant: “You’d better run! They’re closing the doors NOW!” This is exactly how I boarded my first flight to study abroad. The flight that I thought was 10:40 pm Chicago time was actually 9:40 pm…

How/Why did I Choose my Program?

Nick Talamantez Major: Film, Video and Media Studies Non-WMU: Sol Education, Granada, Spain, Fall 2018 With all of the study abroad programs out there, how did I manage to narrow my choices down to one? A LOT of reading! Man do I hate to glaze over program pages for hours! It was necessary for me…

The Dreaded Visa Application

Adriana Turner Major: English Non-WMU AIFS: Grenoble, France I had heard sometime during the extensive process that French visas were one of the most demanding. I listened to dreamy tales of other countries with much less intensive requirements as we, a group of ten strangers with similar destinations, sat in an office for hours waiting…

I am sweaty, I am excited and nervous… but I’m okay

Kelsey Dovico Fulbright U.S. Student Program: Teaching Assistant Madrid, Spain, 2018-2019 iHola, Madrid! Despite my genuine excitement and readiness for this experience, the idea of arriving in a foreign country sans abode certainly kept me up at night over the summer. Indeed, it was perhaps the most stress-inducing reality of preparing to leave. Fulbright advised…

Ready, Set, Go?

Nora Owens Major: Spanish and Occupational Therapy Non-WMU, AIFS: Granada, Spain Sitting in the airport, I’m pretty nervous for this trip to start, but extremely excited for what lies ahead. It has been a crazy few days shopping and packing for this long trip. I’ve never been to Europe before, so I might have packed…

Weekends

Carly Baldwin Majors: Early Childhood Professional & Spanish Universidad de Cantrabria, Spain, Summer II Two months of free time on the weekends in Santander sounds nice… and it was.  However, that sentence is a bit misleading.  Yes, we had tons of free time on the weekends, but sometimes we went on mandatory excursions as a…

Preparing to Dive into Spain

Michael Mikolajczak Major: Spanish, Finance Universidad de Burgos, Spain, Fall 2018 My flight is today, and I am in an awkward state of pure excitement, fear, and sadness. Studying Spanish abroad has been a dream of mine since I started taking classes in junior high.  As I took more classes and learned about Spanish culture,…

Fragments of Pre-Departure Reflection

Kelsey Dovico Fulbright U.S. Student Program: Teaching Assistant Madrid, Spain, 2018-2019 The path is made by walking I depart for Madrid in three days. Months of preparation are coming together for this very moment in time, and literally one and a half years of anticipation (since the application process began) are circling brightly in my…

Stepping into beautiful cultures

Sasha Bosco Major: Spanish and Tourism and Travel Universidad de Cantabria, Spain, Summer II Europe provides lenses for the rest of the world to see a rich and deep cultural history no matter where you are at in the continent. Everywhere you step, you step into a new history—ancient walls tell the story of how…