The Institute of International Education (IIE) and the New York Times have released some videos from contestants in their Generation Study Abroad video challenge. For those who don’t know, Generation Study Abroad is an initiative led by the U.S. Department of State that aims to double the number of American college students who study abroad by the end of this decade. Check out the videos below.
Here’s a quick video from one of our students in South Africa:
I like that bit near the end where our narrator Bekah says, “Kind of surreal that I’m here right now.” World travel often has that effect on a person. It’s pretty awesome.
One of the most fascinating things about traveling in a foreign country is the language, the sudden emergence of a completely different script on every common object and structure everywhere around you.
This is particularly (and much more intensely) true when the language in question doesn’t use the Roman alphabet (which is used in English, Spanish, and German, for example), as in the picture above. Especially after 10+ hours on a plane, reeling from jet lag, scanning for familiarity and finding it in something like a freeway sign, then realizing that you have no idea where you are. Or where anything else is.
That’s when you start thinking: I am far more ignorant than I ever could have possibly known. And now it’s time to do something about that.
(Everybody know what language that is? Anybody have a guess at what country this is from? Hint: Shoreline students just made a brief stop there.)
Known as the City of Eternal Spring and the Garden City, Cochabamba, Bolivia sits in the Cochabamba Valley located in the Andes Mountains. Its climate, fertility, and beauty have attracted people for hundreds of years. It was first inhabited over 1,000 years ago, and continues to serve as a center for agriculture and industry today.
Dental Hygiene and Nursing students from Shoreline arrived there on August 24 for a service learning program. They have been working with local doctors, dental professionals, and organizations to provide basic dental and health care and education to those who may not otherwise be able to access these services.
And, of course, they’re representing Seattle while they’re there.
They’ll be heading into a village in the jungle soon, so be sure to check back to read about their latest adventures and the great work that they’re doing!
Located on the South African coast, Mossel Bay is believed to be where humans first developed many of the behaviors that differentiated us from other primates: using heat to make tools, harvesting shellfish and seafood, incorporating small blades to make more complex tools, and using dye as a decoration.
Shoreline’s South Africa Study Abroad group visited the bay and saw some of the caves where early humans built these skills.
Today, Mossel Bay continues to attract large groups of advanced primates (a.k.a. people), but this is mostly due to its warm and relatively dry climate and its beautiful Indian ocean beaches. And apparently, one place that you can stay is a train turned hostel. All of my five-year-old-self dreams come true! Sleeping in a train car on the beach! (Apparently my five-year-old self wanted to be some variety of exceedingly lucky hobo.)
Keep checking back for more from Shoreline’s South Africa Study Abroad group!
Our students in South Africa recently visited the Castle of Good Hope, which was built by the Dutch East India Company beginning in 1666. Today, it is the best-preserved example of a Dutch East India Company fort, and a representation of European colonialism—as a European colonial military structure, it served as a center for oppression of the local peoples.
From the castle, there is an excellent view of Table Mountain, Cape Town’s most iconic and instantly recognizable geographic feature.
Keep checking back for more updates on our study abroad group’s travels!