Posts Tagged 'study abroad'

Going on a Trip

College is the time to experience new opportunities that otherwise might not be available to you. I’ve had a lot of opportunities thrown my way, but none were as exciting as signing up for a Honor’s seminar class that will travel to Scotland. The class doesn’t start until the spring semester and the trip to Scotland isn’t until May, but I am already preparing and planning! Being able to go overseas and visit different countries has always been a dream of mine; however, I never thought that I would be able to actually achieve that dream simply due to the cost of traveling. If it wasn’t for WTAMU and the Honor’s Program, I would never have been able to attend and afford this trip.

Seminar classes are required by all honor’s students, and there is normally at least one class offered a semester that has a travel component attached. Last semester a bunch of Honor’s students went to Costa Rica for about ten days and had an amazing trip. It’s not just the Honor’s program that allows students to travel however; there are classes in all different departments on campus that have the opportunity to travel abroad. The trip I will be taking to Scotland is part of an Art History focused class, which fits in well to my major of Graphic Design. The college of business is also offering a course that will be traveling to London this upcoming semester. Every Freshman has the opportunity to write a paper based on the readership novel and have the opportunity to travel to a country based on the novel they read. If you are unable to get into a class that travels, there is always the option to study abroad. You could visit or live in another country for up to a Semester or more.

Going overseas, or simply visiting a foreign country is an experience you should take advantage of while you are in college. Visit  http://www.wtamu.edu/academics/study-abroad.aspx to find out more!

Studying Abroad

Who DOESN’T want to study abroad? The thing is, most students think it isn’t a reality.  It’s expensive, there’s the paperwork, and do you really think you have a chance of living in another country for a semester?

Well, it’s really not that hard to do it!  You just have to be dedicated and get the small things done.  First, you need to go to the Study Abroad office. Then, you need to talk to your adviser.  They can help you figure out the when, where, and what of the equation.  They will take into consideration your degree plan, 4-year plan, and all other academics.  Then, you need to select a program and apply early! It’s important to apply early so you can get financial aid and credit for the courses!

These are the basic steps on how to get your dream of studying abroad started.  For more information on eligibility and what to do after you’ve been accepted go to http://www.wtamu.edu/academics/study-abroad-steps.aspx.

Here are some pictures straight off the WTAMU website to show you what you can experience!

back to the real world…

Spring break is OVER!  Tomorrow it’s back to life as usual, with classes, tests, assignments…  Granted, I had a pretty quiet week this past week, but it was a welcome respite from school all the same.  Whoever invented spring break was genius, pure genius.

Sorry I haven’t written in a while — like Wes said, it’s been a crazy semester!  I came back from India safe and sound (see a few of my pictures here) and had an amazing time; I’d go back in a heartbeat if I could.  It was so incredibly strange to be a foreigner; I never got used to being stared at everywhere I went, being followed by salesmen and orphans and cows everywhere I went, or finding ruins, palaces, and historical sites everywhere I went.  The food was amazing, the air was smoky, the sights were beautiful (especially the Taj Mahal!), and the people were very curious about us… Whenever we stopped at a tourist site, we took pictures of the attraction, and the Indians took pictures of us.  Tall, light-skinned people — amazing!

 One of my favorite memories of our trip was our impromptu stop at a roadside kite shop outside of Jaipur.  Jaipur is called the kite capital of the world; every year in late January, they host a kite-flying competition, and we encountered several Indians from the U.S. that had traveled to Jaipur simply to watch it.  Looking out of my hotel window every afternoon, I could see colorful paper kites popping up and down throughout the city, like popcorn or confetti dotting the horizon; and almost every tree in the city had at least one kite stuck in its leaves somewhere.  The people at the kite shop were very gracious, friendly, and honest, a welcome change from the pushy hawkers of the metropolis.  We played with the kids before they climbed on their school bus (all bundled up in scarves and hats, because it was a frigid 55 degrees Fahrenheit — oh my), flew kites with the shop owners, laughed with the women…  I got a taste of real India, or what I felt “real” India should be like; not the Westernized, trinket-selling tourist traps of the cities, but the hard-working, poor-yet-happy, everyday Indian citizens at home.

One thing that really surprised me, on the other hand, was the Indians’ pre-conceived notions about me.  I grew up in conservative, almost-rural West Texas, where men still say “ma’am” when addressing me, and opening doors for ladies is second-nature.  In India, however, women are viewed very poorly; oftentimes, their only value is their use as a “commodity” that can give men children, elevated social status, or free household labor.  Even worse is the Indians’ concept of Western women.  I suppose they expect all of us to be like the women they see on Hollywood big screens — loose morals, promiscuous, and manipulative — and many times we were treated accordingly.  We learned to expect this attitude and adjust our behaviors; although different and sometimes awkward, it wasn’t a big deal.  What broke my heart, though, were the cute little boys walking home from school that laughed as they made obscene gestures at us — it was sad to think that they learn such attitudes at such a young age, and that they will probably retain these preconceived concepts of us for as long as they live.  I am now thankful for every respectful word said to me, every door opened with a smile, and every expression of an expectation of my respectability back here at home; like they say, there’s nothing like going away to make you appreciate what you have at home.

That’s enough for now.  I hope you all had a great spring break, and I’ll be back again soon!

-Kelsi

India or bust

So… tomorrow is the big day.  FINALLY.  Fourteen other WT students, faculty members, and I are flying to New Delhi, India!  I’ve never taken a sixteen-hour plane ride — I plan on sleeping a lot. 🙂  After spending the past semester reading about India, it will be amazing to actually experience everything first-hand.  We’ll travel around northern India for two weeks, riding elephants, boating down the Ganges, visiting major temples, mosques, and historical sites, interacting with the people, and side-stepping cows. (ha.) 

I must admit, I’m a little nervous… okay, I’m scared to death.  Even after reading all about India, I still don’t know what to expect — how will people interact with me?  will I be safe?  what is the food like?  and are the monkeys really that dangerous?  Nevertheless, I simply can’t wait to get on that plane tomorrow.  I love new experiences, and I know this trip will blow me away — besides, the suspense is killing me!  If you’d like to keep up with our escapades, see our online journal here.  It will be updated daily by all of us students, relating the day’s events and our reactions to our foreign (perhaps bizarre?) surroundings. 

I hope everyone had a wonderful New Year; in a couple of weeks, I’ll post again with an overview of the trip (and pictures!).  Namaste!