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Central Alumni Newsletter

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Hello friends of Central College Abroad! This newsletter, released the second Tuesday of every month, is intended to keep you in touch with what’s happening with Central College Abroad’s programs across the globe.

Merida, Mexico students take a leap by the ocean side.
Merida, Mexico students take a leap by the ocean side.

Just around the corner! Central College Abroad Cooperating Council Conference April 8-10, 2010

Don’t forget to register for Central College Abroad’s Coop Council next month! Events will run Thursday through Saturday, April 8-10, 2010. Join us on Thursday, April 8, for a virtual pre-departure course simulation and study abroad fair in the afternoon and Friday, April 9, to hear firsthand updates from our on-site program directors and participate in educational sessions. On Saturday, we invite you to stay for our morning pre-departure orientation for our students and their parents. We hope to see you there!

Register Now!

For more information visit:

Cycling in TexelLeiden program get away to Texel Island

While living in Leiden may provide study abroad students with a great experience of what life in a city is like, Central College Abroad provides students with the opportunity to see both sides of the scene. The countryside was revealed to the students when they went on a program excursion to Texel.

Texel is an island in the North Holland region of the Netherlands. During this unique trip, students use bicycles as their main transportation cycling the island all day visiting museums and mingling with the natives. Once they have toured around, students head out to sea on a shrimp fishing trip where they join fisherman as they catch, peal and eat shrimp before returning to the harbor.

“Honestly, I just loved biking around in the countryside, taking in the quaint thatched-roofed farm houses, and enjoying the green pastures,” said current Leiden participant Luke Ridout. “It reminded me a lot of Iowa, which is where I'm originally from. Everything was beautiful and quaint.”

Riding around is not the only thing students participate in; they also get a chance to try out their skills at being a chef.

“I liked learning how to make pannenkoen, which are [Dutch] pancakes,” said current Leiden student Kat De Penning. “They are not like American pancakes. They are thin and rather large in size. Some people cook cheese into them, while other put fruit inside.”

While students discovered new recipes for pannenkoen and rode around looking at the ocean view they were also given a chance to build new friendships.

“It was new scenery and by living all together, people really got a chance to talk and be around people we hadn't spent much time with yet. It was a great experience getting to know people better, a great group bonding time,” said Sarah Shimon current Leiden participant.

This Leiden getaway is not one to be missed. Texel provides students with a chance for an exciting adventure with the Resident Director Steef Eman’s expert guidance.

For more information about the Leiden program visit:

Sign up now for spring photo contest!

Central College Abroad is now accepting photos from all students who went abroad with our program no matter what year or what program! The categories for the contest are: “My daily life abroad,” “Travel and friends,” and “Artistic or abstract.” Two photos are accepted per category.

London Photo

The photos will then be judged and winners will be announced online at and at the study abroad fair April 8 at Central College. Prizes will be given out to the winners with the best photo for each category! This is a time to show off your photography skills. Make sure you act fast because photos are due by March 15. For more information contact intern Ashley Barsness at

Sign up and send your photos in online by visiting:

Still accepting applications for fall 2010!

Start your application now for study abroad during the fall 2010 semester. With Central College Abroad, you can expect a more valuable experience. Personalized program options across the globe allow you to get the most out of your experience abroad. Explore your possibilities and get started on your application now. Applications are due Monday, March 15.

Alumni Spotlight

Who: Marisol Zamorano
Major: Communications and international studies, Texas Lutheran University 2007
Semester abroad: Granada, Spain spring 2005
Current Career: External Relations Coordinator at Rice University, Jones Graduate School of Business

Central College Abroad student

About my experience: My experience was a little different from the others, because I am from Mexico so I already knew Spanish going into Spain. I picked Spain because I wanted to go abroad by myself, but I did not want my first experience abroad to be even more difficult than it already is, so that is why I picked a country where I knew the language. Even though I knew the language, I experienced major culture shock! The Spanish they speak there is very different than the Spanish we speak in Mexico. There were many times that I did not understand what people were telling me!

Another major experience I had while studying abroad that has affected my future in every way, was getting to know the man who is now my husband. He is from Germany and I met him while I was in high school. He was studying abroad in my hometown, McAllen, Texas. When I went abroad [to Granada, Spain] I got to see him again. My study abroad experience has turned into a life between cultures and I love it!

How going abroad has helped: Going abroad made me want to work in a university setting to be a part of educating young people and giving them a chance to study abroad. I feel that when someone is taken out of the environment they are used to and put in a new one, they learn so much about themselves and about others and that helps them become better people. After my semester abroad, [while still attending Texas Lutheran] I got involved with the international office where I helped a group of international students adjust to their new surroundings. My study abroad experience [affects my current career because it] made me more aware and open-minded about people with different backgrounds. I believe that if you are open to all types of people the communication will be better and more will get done. I also feel that studying abroad taught me how to deal with change and adapt quickly to new environments. This was essential when I first started my job.

For more information about our Granada, Spain program visit:

Join us at the Forum on Education Abroad Conference this month

Central College Abroad has once again been selected to present at the Forum on Education Abroad Conference, an annual two-day conference, solely focused on the field of education abroad, in Charlotte, N.C.

On Wednesday, March 24, Larry Braskamp, co-author of Global Perspective Inventory (GPI) and professor emeritus at Loyola University Chicago; Dennis Doyle, professor of communication studies at Central College; and Brian Zylstra, manager of on-campus operations for Central College Abroad; will lead a workshop titled “Using the Global Perspective Inventory (GPI) to Assess the Value of Education Abroad."

Braskamp and Doyle will also take part in a panel presentation on Thursday, March 25, titled “Integrating Education Abroad in the Campus Ethos” where they, along with four other session leaders, will present on major initiatives that integrate education abroad into the campus mission and culture.

That same day, Paris program resident director, Shelley Cavaness, alongside other France-based panelists, will participate in a panel presentation discussing, “When Vision and Values Collide: Multiple Perspectives on the Impact of Communication and Technology Onsite (France)."

Learn more about the Global Perspective Inventory (GPI) at

For more information on the conference visit

Prices for the 2010-2011 academic year announced

Central College Abroad has announced program fees for the 2010-2011 academic school year now listed online. We have kept our program fee increases to a minimum while continuing all of the things that set Central’s program apart.

Your program fee includes all of the following:

  • Tuition
  • Guaranteed housing
  • Cultural activities and program excursions
  • Advising and support from professional on-site resident directors
  • A full on-site orientation, cross-cultural courses and course work through Central College Abroad and at some of the world’s finest institutions
  • Internships and service-learning placements, tailored to your interests, available at no extra cost

Celebrating the New Year in ChinaCelebrating the New Year in China

One of the most valuable things Central College Abroad wants students to learn while studying in a different country is that culture’s way of life.

Currently studying abroad in Hangzhou, China, Will LaCroix (Central College) had the opportunity to join in celebrations for one of China’s most festive holidays, New Year. However, to his surprise the Chinese New Year was not what he first expected.

“Chinese New Year is more like America's Christmas. Kids get gifts, consisting of clothes and firecrackers exclusively. A new year means new clothes for them.”

La Croix, who has been abroad in China since the fall of 2009 was able to stay with an international friend of his over the holiday. La Croix found the New Year celebrations to be much different than back home.

“Even though I was in a ‘small’ city, for the few days they celebrate the New Year, you could never go more than a few minutes without hearing a lot of very large and loud firecrackers. My friend actually told me we probably would not be sleeping the night of New Years, because every family is out shooting firecrackers at midnight. Keep in mind that a Chinese firecracker is much bigger than an American one.”

“Except for the constant noise of explosions, Chinese New Year is very subdued. Since there are so few annual holidays for common workers, this is one of two weeks they do not have to work, so they sleep in and relax. Younger adults may go out, but families mostly just eat a few big meals together and rest for the coming new year,” said La Croix.

Another thing that he found unique to the holiday was, “On the second day of the New Year, it is traditional to go to the house of a relative who may have recently passed away, or stay home.”
With each student’s study abroad experience there is a new lesson learned. For La Croix it was the Chinese New Year.

For more information on the Hangzhou, China program visit:

Visit us at NAFSA at booth #135

The Central College Abroad team will attend the NAFSA Annual Conference and Expo in Kansas City, Mo., Sunday-Friday, May 30-June 4, 2010. Please join us in the expo hall at booth #135. We are excited to be a part of NAFSA’s conference on international education.

Central College Abroad Quick Links for Faculty & Advisors:

Contact Us

Central College Abroad
812 University Box 0140
Pella, IA 50219
Fax: 641-628-5375

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