Nos Vemos

Kelsey Dovico Fulbright U.S. Student Program: Teaching Assistant Madrid, Spain, 2018-2019 Thank you to WMU Study Abroad for allowing me to share my Fulbright experience on this blog, and thank you, dear reader! ————————- On my way out Next week is my last day at FSG and the conclusion of my Fulbright grant. This English…

An Unfortunately Typical Conversation

Kelsey Dovico Fulbright U.S. Student Program: Teaching Assistant Madrid, Spain, 2018-2019 Madrileños, I have been enthralled by the zest for life imbued in your culture and empowered by the direct and clear way you talk to me. I have relished in seeing friends and family walk arm-in-arm around your friendly neighborhoods, and delight in the…

Las Delicias

Kelsey Dovico Fulbright U.S. Student Program: Teaching Assistant Madrid, Spain, 2018-2019 I Moved! Said a quick goodbye to Santa Eugenia as I escaped what turned out to be an extremely illegal living situation. To begin, I learned the landlord prohibited my contracted roommate from renting out the spare rooms to others and threatened to evict…

Heart Work

Kelsey Dovico Fulbright U.S. Student Program: Teaching Assistant Madrid, Spain, 2018-2019 My grant-stipulated schedule only spans about 18 hours per week – I teach 12 classes, join coordination and planning meetings with the Social Intervention staff, and design and prepare lesson materials. So what do I do with the “rest” of my time? I find…

Soup, Salad, and other Cultural Pluralism

Kelsey Dovico Fulbright U.S. Student Program: Teaching Assistant Madrid, Spain, 2018-2019 Identity and Multiplicity I am daily immersed in Gitano, anglo-Spanish, Venezuelan, and Moroccan cultural settings and social dynamics, so I’ve had no shortage of inspiration for reflecting on culture! We know that culture is a shared understanding and use of symbols: language, social interaction,…

Seven Countries

Nora Owens Major: Spanish and Occupational Therapy Non-WMU, AIFS: Granada, Spain Before I even came to Spain, I knew that I wanted to travel around Europe. It is so easy to travel in Europe and often can be pretty cheap. I came here wanting to travel three or four weekends a month, but I realized…

Culture, Self, and Community

Kelsey Dovico Fulbright U.S. Student Program: Teaching Assistant Madrid, Spain, 2018-2019 Body Talk Given my less-than-sparkling Spanish, I am sometimes left to fit a missing puzzle piece (or two) together by reading hand gestures, body language, and facial expressions. I’ve become more sensitive to reading micro-expressions, noticing in greater detail the way faces participate in…

The Protests in Europe

Nora Owens Major: Spanish and Occupational Therapy Non-WMU, AIFS: Granada, Spain All across Europe there have been protests either protesting local government or the European government. I was in Paris a few weeks ago and the protests were out of control. They were protesting the new taxes on petroleum and other taxes. All of the…

I Got my Ricolas Though

Sarah Jones Major: Political Science Universidad de Burgos, Spain, Fall 2018 Mental health is important and studying abroad can be very taxing. Studying abroad requires you to live so far away from the places, people and sights that you’re used to. Often this causes a lot of issues with homesickness, anxiety, and stress. Many people…

Day in, Day Out

Kelsey Dovico Fulbright U.S. Student Program: Teaching Assistant Madrid, Spain, 2018-2019 Morning: Greeting the day with dance The primary reason I applied to Fulbright is because I work in the field of intercultural education and lacked the experience of living, working, and learning in another society. But I had already experienced some of the world…

A Sample of Spanish Cuisine

Michael Mikolajczak Major: Spanish, Finance Universidad de Burgos, Spain, Fall 2018 When traveling abroad one of the most exciting things to experience is food. The food of a country can be very telling of its culture and the life of its people. For example, most of the food in Spain is considered tapas. Tapas are…

La Vida Gitana

Kelsey Dovico Fulbright U.S. Student Program: Teaching Assistant Madrid, Spain, 2018-2019 Encuentro Estatal de Estudiantes Gitanos The first weekend of October, I attended the fifth Encuentro Estatal de Estudiantes Gitanas (National Reunion of Gitano/a Students) in a rural town north of Madrid named El Escorial. Nearly 70 teenagers and 40 Fundacion educational support staff attended: in general…