From: Davison, Michigan
Elizabeth traveled to Spain through American Institute for Foreign Study (AIFS) during the 2011 summer. She studied there for 6 weeks. Here is a reflection of her experience:
My study abroad experience was one I will never forget! I took classes at the University of Salamanca five days a week in Spanish language, literature and history. On the weekends, I traveled to different parts of Spain. AIFS is really one of the most incredible programs out there. They were so helpful in every aspect and were constantly available to answer any questions. I really enjoyed my classes, although they did present a little bit of a challenge at first, as they were all taught completely in Spanish.
Which experience had the most impact on your personally?
The city of Salamanca impacted me most, as it is steeped in history and culture. My dorm was a few blocks away from the building where Columbus asked Isabel and Ferdinand for permission to go to the New World.
What were your expectations of the trip? How did your experience differ from your expectations?
I was not expecting to be so overwhelmed (positively) by the richness of the culture and history in Spain. It was definitely a welcome surprise.
What was the biggest difference in culture that you experienced while a abroad?
The biggest difference in culture was the food. If you don't like pork and rabbit, I suggest you bring a couple boxes of granola bars.
What surprised you the most about your time abroad?
How quickly it went!
How has this experience changed you?
I feel better versed in Spanish language, culture and history and I feel more invested in my major now that I have seen the roots of the culture I am studying.
Would you recommend this program to other students?
Yes, I think that it really encompassed everything that a study abroad program is meant to encompass.