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Central Alumni Newsletter

Friday, August 10, 2012

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

Students pose with “Queen Elizabeth” in England
Students pose with “Queen Elizabeth” in England

Apply Now!

The application deadline is right around the corner! All application materials, including transcripts, essay, and recommendations forms are due by October 1 for spring 2013 programs.
Take advantage of our online application — it’s fast, easy and FREE!

And remember, every little bit helps: Central College Abroad offers scholarships up to $1,000! The scholarship deadline is also October 1.

Carrying the Olympic Torch…Priceless!

Price of clothes for internship… $$. Plane ticket to London…$$$. Getting to hold the Olympic torch in London the month before the Olympics start…Priceless.
Heather Higgins, of Campbell University in North Carolina, had no idea that an internship with Gary Streeter, Conservative Member of Parliament, would lead to holding the Olympic torch during a speech given by Baroness Tanni Grey-Thompson, a Paralympic gold medalist and member of the House of the Lords.

Photo caption: The Eiffel Tower in Paris lights up the night.
Higgins holding the torch

Higgins was privileged to participate in the annual National Parliamentary Prayer Breakfast to pray for the implementation of the Olympic Truce, a cease-fire for the duration of the Olympic Games in all conflict-ravaged countries allowing relief-aid to be provided to those under duress. 
This experience had an incredible impact on Higgins’ experience in London, England. She met many members of parliament, a Paralympic medalist, and had the honor of holding the Olympic torch. Going abroad you expect great things to happen, but never underestimate the opportunities that you may stumble upon.

Find your priceless moment with an internship in London, England

Don’t Worry, Pack Happy

For the next few newsletters, Central College Abroad alumni will offer advice on traveling abroad. In this issue, alumni share their thoughts on packing:

  1. Pack conscientiously and minimalize
    Alison Neevel, Merida, Yucatan alumna, discovered that she could have left many of her warm layers at home. Many students found that having a friend or a family member go through their suitcase helped them eliminate many “unnecessary” things.
  2. Rolled and sealed
    Almost every student said that rolling clothes saves the most space. Others added that using vacuum-seal bags saved even more space.
  3. Carry-on
    Mollie Kingma, Merida, Yucatan alumna, packed airline certified 3 oz. bottles of shampoo and body wash in her carry-on and bought bigger bottles upon arriving in Merida. Meghan Rettenmeier, also a Merida, Yucatan alumna, packed an extra pair of clothes in her carry-on in case she lost her luggage.
  4. Team-up or bring an extra weekend bag
    Students agreed that having a duffle bag, or a smaller suitcase for weekend excursions was incredibly useful during the semester, and they could fill it with souvenirs when they came home. Hillary Stintsman, London, England alumna, and a friend decided that they both needed some more space, so they packed a second bag together and shared the cost. She did say later that she could have done without the second suitcase.
  5. Sentimentally significant
    Photos from home may help with homesickness and help start conversations with people you meet. Bring a few of your favorite clothes, but also some you are willing to part with after 4 months.
  6. Don’t bring...
    Extra books; invest in a digital copy or a tablet if you can’t live without the Harry Potter series.  Richard Boyle, Bangor, Wales alumni, said, “Don’t bring too many shoes, or hats!”
  7. Don’t use the mail!
    Don’t expect to mail everything to your abroad site, not only is this an expensive option, but also very risky. With international mail, you never know how long it may take for your things to arrive.

The main thing to remember is to not overpack; leave space in your suitcase! Wherever you study abroad, don’t procrastinate; you can be more at ease as you leave the country if you start packing earlier. Above all, remember that alumni from your program are always willing to offer more site-specific advice.

Start packing, and contact Central College Abroad with additional questions.

Impossible n’est pas français     

Last month readers met non-traditional student Michelle Woods from Holy Names University in Oakland, California, before she left to study in Paris, France.  Now she reflects on her experience abroad.

“I would highly recommend studying abroad to other non-traditional students, even if you have visited that country previously, as a tourist.  Experiencing a different country from a student perspective is beneficial at any age!” said Woods, after studying in Paris, France in July.

Woods found that everywhere she traveled she continually discovered more reasons to love France. She was able to feed her appetite for knowledge on French history and art as she walked down the street. Woods found that although she could appreciate the beauty of the statues and varying architecture, she wanted to know more. She was able to acquire this knowledge during her art class, one of the required classes of the program. “Bernie, our instructor, was amazing!” she said.

Woods posing underneath the Eiffel Tower
Woods posing underneath the Eiffel Tower

Overcome your impossible in Paris, France!  

Islamic Studies in Granada, Spain

Listen to Resident Director Verónica García Montero explain the new Islamic Studies track of the Granada, Spain program. Students will enroll in Spanish and Arabic language classes, and the rest of the coursework will focus on the study of Islamic culture.

LaValle and Roseburrough finishing the mural.

Through Different Eyes

Five students traveled across the Atlantic Ocean in June to study on Central College Abroad’s Accra, Ghana summer program. Each student chose to study in Ghana for different reasons, however most agree that it was one of the best life-changing decisions they ever made. “It’s amazing going to Ghana with an American perception on things, and coming home with a Ghanaian perception. Traveling abroad really opens your eyes to what is beyond our borders”, said Lucas Lazenby of Central College.

The students weren’t always sure of what to expect. Lazenby found that although he was nervous about the unknown, he was more excited at the prospect of exploring a new country and culture.

Students taking a breather during the Ghana summer program
Students taking a breather during the Ghana summer program

Students took two classes while in Ghana, Introduction to the Living History of Ghana, and Introduction to Dance and the Performing Arts in Ghana. Trevor Koolmees from Central College said the dance class was, “the coolest class I have ever taken!” Although, Lazenby loved both classes, if he had to choose, he preferred the history course. He said, “Learning about African history, while being in Africa, was by far the best way to learn.”

As part of the program students traveled around Accra, exploring art exhibits, museums, and historical sites. Students also had a free weekend to explore on their own. Lazenby and Koolmees visited a monkey sanctuary, where they hand-fed bananas to Mona Monkeys.

These students had their eyes opened to a completely different way of life, which will forever impact them. “Traveling abroad changes your perception on life,” Lazenby said. “It shows you how things could be better for everyone. If you travel to another country and don’t change as a human being, you missed out on something special.”  

Don’t miss out on something special; venture to Accra, Ghana!

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

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