A Summer in Segovia, Spain
By Victoria Gourdin
Meter Staff Writer
I have always had a love for languages and cultures in general, with traveling being another passion of mine. In the spring of my senior year in high school, I traveled to Spain for an exchange program, and early in the fall, my now good friend Ana came from her home in Spain to study American culture. While the experience was invaluable and unforgettable, I knew that I would want to come back. So, when I heard that TSU had options for studying abroad, I had to jump at the opportunity, which is how I found myself spending my summer in Spain.
I completed the application to study abroad and signed up for the correlating scholarship as quickly as possible. I also made sure to keep in constant contact with Mr. Mark Brinkley, who works with students looking to study abroad. With his help, the process went smoothly and before I knew it, I was having my first college study abroad experience.
I began making friends before even leaving America in the airport, and by the time we arrived in Spain, it started to feel a just like a family. We stayed in Segovia, a small city about an hour away from Madrid, and met the families that would be housing us. One of the biggest concerns people have is the language barrier but the program, TnCIS, places each individual student in a family based on certain criteria, including language proficiency.
Once in Segovia, we had a day or so to settle ourselves in with our families before we began class. Outside of classes we also had excursions or field trips. The Spain trip not only explored many parts of Segovia but also many surrounding areas as well. While all of these excursions were a part of the academic program, the students were also encouraged to have fun.
When class was out and no field trip was planned, we enjoyed free time. Students were allowed to use this time to walk the city and even enjoy some of the nightlife Segovia had to offer. In Spain, many people say ‘no pasa nada’ meaning don’t worry about it. In other words, we were expected to go out and enjoy all of Segovia.
Studying abroad is absolutely something that I would recommend to anyone and everyone. In order to fully learn any language or culture, you must surround yourself with people who speak the language natively. One of the best ways to do that is to travel and TSU has many different opportunities to offer.