Traveling the world is an amazing experience. It broadens people's horizons, helps people move in new directions and ultimately, fundamentally transforms people by engaging them in new activities in new places with new people. Our students are able to experience travel through our numerous study abroad opportunities for entire semesters for 3-4 weeks over January Term. We highly encourage all of our student-athletes to study abroad in some capacity during their four years at Gustavus and this J-Term we have three abroad. Read the pre-trip interviews below and then check back in February for their post-trip interviews!
Germany, France, England, and Ireland
I am studying abroad in the month of January with a group of roughly 30 other Gustavus students. My course title is the Olympic Quest Tour. I will travel to Germany, France, England, and Ireland. Within these countries I will be going to many cities and will look at pre and post World War Olympic Sites.
1. You are visiting many countries over the month’s span, what does your itinerary look like?
|Warner Bro's Harry Potter Sight|
Very busy!!! I first start my journey in Berlin, Germany. I will see many sites while I am here, one of them relating to sports being the Olympic Stadium. Another stop for us is the Checkpoint Charlie Museum as well as one of the few bunkers remaining after the war. From Berlin I head to Wittenberg, the key town in the Reformation. After Germany I will head to France. I will be seeing many of the major sites here, the Eiffel Tower, the Arc De Triomphe, the Notre Dame Cathedral, and many more! Another fun excursion is our day trip to a vineyard located outside of Paris. I am also headed to the Stade de France (Olympic Soccer Stadium). Moving on to England, I will travel to London and see places like Westminster Abbey and the Warner Brothers Harry Potter site!
|Trinity College, Dublin, Ireland|
Lastly, I will finish up in Dublin. I do not spend a lot of time here, so I will want to use my time well and see Trinity College which houses the Book of Kells.
2. Of the four countries, which are you most looking forward to visiting and why?
|Eiffel Tower, Paris, France|
I am most looking forward to France. We get to spend a lot of time there and I cannot wait to explore the country. I also am excited to experience the different culture that France has, not to mention to delicious cuisine!!
3. What new food(s) are you excited to try?
I am excited to try all of the pastries and desserts that France has to offer! Especially crepes!
Cape Town, South Africa
|Cape Town, South Africa|
1. How did you choose South Africa?
I chose to go to South Africa opposed to the other places available, because the focus of the trip is on global service. Our group will be volunteering for a non-profit organization called Africa Jam which helps underprivileged kids and teens by providing services for community programs, more opportunities for education, and leadership skills. We get to work with these children directly and help improve their lives which sounded so rewarding to me which is why I chose South Africa. We will also be going on a two day safari which will be very fun!
2. What do you believe will be the hardest part about adapting to and connecting with a completely new culture
|Lion's Head Mountain|
I feel that the most difficult part about adapting to this new culture that I have never experienced before will be the food, the extreme poverty in certain areas, racial tensions, and the large time difference. It will be difficult initially but I really hope I can get out of my comfort zone to truly connect with the people I meet their and create meaningful relationships.
3. What are you most excited for
1. Where in Germany will you be studying and what inspired you to study here?
We will be studying in Northern Germany and then we will be traveling to Berlin and continuing onto Munich. I wanted to go on this trip because my dad’s side of the family is from Germany/Austria. This would be a great opportunity for me to travel around the country where my great great great grandfather came from. Also this trip is about debunking the stereotypes we have about Germans. As a sociology major this was very interesting to me.
2. There are more soccer fan clubs in Germany than there are anywhere else in the world, are you planning on attending any matches or exploring soccer from the Germans perspective?
I do not plan to attend any soccer games, however I never know what my professor has up her sleeve. Depending if there are games taking place we might experience the Germans’ love of soccer through their spirit.
3. One of your goals of the trip is to learn about and debunk the stereotypes of what we, here in the U.S. and other places think about Germany –how are you planning to accomplish this?
I plan to accomplish this by keeping an open mind to the culture there and learning about their way of life. I will experience people who may fit the stereotypes we associate with Germany, however, despite those who fit the stereotype, there are so many more Germans that don’t and I can’t wait to learn about them. I want to know what living in Germany is like and experience it to the best of my ability for the 3 weeks we are there.
We hope you can see yourself studying abroad at Gustavus as well!