Spring Break 2019 was one for the books. I attended a faculty-led study abroad program in Rome, Italy. We were able to experience 10 days of a distinct culture and relate our knowledge of its history to the ancient buildings in front of us. With this trip I gained a desire to travel more as well as a more open mind to be able to accept lifestyles and ideas that may be foreign to my own.

Something that really stuck out to me while abroad is how we would just be walking around and then there was the Colosseum or some other famous ancient ruin. To us, this was such a spectacle, but to the locals, they took it for granted because it was something they saw every day. Another thing that stuck out to me was the amount of people who knew English very well. We never had an issue trying to communicate with the locals, but there were times when people tried to take advantage of us and trick us into paying more than we owed.

Rome is a very unique city because it contains so much history. Just walking a one-mile radius you can learn so much about the ancient Roman culture, art culture, and the more modern Roman culture. Rome is a very lively city with people who genuinely love life. It was amazing to see how the people interacted with one another and how their day to day lives looked.

It was very refreshing to see the locals be so accepting of all of the tourist and welcome into their culture. I chose this faculty led trip because it fit in perfectly with my schedule. Being on the Panhellenic executive board and involved in so many other organizations on campus, I don’t have the time to spend an entire semester overseas. This trip allowed me to have the experience of a lifetime and still be able to be involved on campus. I am very grateful for this trip and constantly looking for more study abroad opportunities like this one.

Sarah Hawkes is majoring in Exercise Science. She spent Spring Break 2019 in Rome, Italy as part of a faculty-led trip for her Classics 1200 course. Sarah had the following to say about her time abroad, “Study Abroad gave me the once in a lifetime opportunity to travel abroad with my best friend. Not only did we get a first hand experience to learn detailed material in our class while in the main setting of this information, but we also got an immersive experience that allowed us to truly engage and understand the culture and society.”

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