The UTC Center for Global Education kicked off the Fall semester with our 2nd Annual field trip to Nashville, Tennessee. As Tennessee’s capital, Nashville offers international students the opportunity to experience both the rich history and culture of the state’s largest city, and it is all within a day’s visit. However, our field trips also aims to encourage international and American student interaction, which we believe greatly enhances the trip experience for everyone. This was the first of two trips the International Office hosts each semester, with Atlanta being our second destination this year.
Our trip began on a sunny day at the beautiful Centennial Park, home to a full-size replica of the Parthenon located in Athens, Greece. Students were free to roam the entire park, where we either strolled through the park, passed the Frisbee around, or observed the monument up-close. Regardless of what students decided to do, the opportunity to stretch our legs and enjoy the sunshine was greatly appreciated by everyone.
After a quick 10 minute drive towards Downtown Nashville, we arrived in the bustling Broadway Street for lunch and some souvenir shopping. I could not stop raving about my favorite fried chicken spot on Broadway, Paradise Park, and a large group of students followed my lead to enjoy a timeless Nashville staple. We walked-off our heavy meal with a walk to the riverfront, where students were greeted by the Tennessee Titans Cheerleaders and Hype Crew giving out free sunglasses, leis, and bead necklaces to promote the upcoming home game against the Oakland Raiders. Pictures with the Titans mascot was a welcomed surprise, and we still had time to enjoy the view of the Tennessee river from the rooftop and riverfront.
Our last stop to the Opry Mills Mall provided the greatest freedom for us in terms of decision making. Students had the chance to enjoy numerous shopping selections, compete with their friends at the arcade, or venture to the scenic Opry Mills Hotel. However, after a long day, several of us took the time to simply chat and relax over a cup of coffee. By this time of the trip, international and American students that had just met each other that morning were already bonding like close friends, and this was apparent by the talking and laughter that ensued during the ride home. From my experience, this was the Center for Global Education’s most successful trip yet, and we believe our future trips will continue to provide students with the same amazing opportunity.
Written on September 9, 2017
By Thomas Davis
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