This year, UC Clermont sent two faculty-led study abroad groups to Mexico and Chile, the latter being the first trip to Chile ever organized by UCC.
Student travelers from each group embarked on a full cultural immersion experience in which they stayed with a host family, attended classes, and visited significant cultural and geological landmarks.
The Chile program was a fourteen-day study abroad over Winter break, planned in coordination with the University of Concepción. Students were housed in the city center of Concepción and in the adjacent city of San Pedro De La Paz. The group did, however, travel to other regions of Central Chile including: Pucón, Valparaíso, Santiago, Las Termas de Chillan, Lota, and Dichato.
“Our trip to Chile is one I will never forget,” said Lizzie Chordas – an undergraduate student at UC, “… it taught me so much about their culture and truly a lot about myself.”
The Mexico program lasted ten days over Spring break and was based in the city of Querétaro. Once there, students took daily Spanish classes intersected by other cultural immersion activities and visits to the cities of Guanajuato and San Miguel Allende.
“It was great to experience how other people live,” said Andrew Lentz – a freshman student at UCC who went on the Mexico trip, “Professor Rubel is incredibly knowledgeable about Mexican culture and is able to share experiences with his students that most tourists wouldn’t get.”
“I believe that every undergraduate student should be exposed to international experience,” said Isabel Parra – a professor of Spanish at UCC and co-faculty leader of the Chile study abroad program.
The emphasis of these trips is to encourage UC Clermont students to take the dive and travel abroad, said David Madrid – assistant professor of Foreign Language at UCC and the other co-faculty leader on the Chile trip. “We want to have more Clermont students, that’s the main goal.”
Neither trip requires Spanish speaking ability to apply. But while the Mexico program placed high importance on Spanish language classes, the still nascent Chile program, according to Madrid and Parra, is working to make that a more integral to the experience.
“Everything we did we built from scratch this time around,” said Madrid; who hopes that adding a Spanish credit to the program will increase the incentive for UCC Students.
“[Study abroad] opens your mind eye, your expectations,” said Madrid, adding that “…you just become a more well-rounded person, I think.”
For more information regarding future study abroad opportunities, please contact:
David Madrid (Chile) at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Jeff Rubel (Mexico) at email@example.com.