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5 posts from March 2018

03/22/2018

Liberal Arts | Spring 2018 | Newsletter II

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Spring semester is going fast! Liberal Arts students have been very busy with classes, internships, cultural activities, and academic trips. Find here some details.

Students visit the Fallas Festival in Valencia

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Valencia 8Valencia 7Liberal Arts students travelled to Valencia for their weekend trip. In there, they had the opportunity to experience a local festivity called Las Fallas, a UNESCO intangible cultural heritage of humanity.  It is a traditional celebration held in commemoration of Saint Joseph. People build monuments out of wood and paper-mache, a lot of times with a satire, political meaning, and they burn them on Saint Joseph day, March 19th.

Students also toured the old town, did a street art tour and went to the Ciudad de las Artes y las Ciencias. They also learned that this year, the main Falla (monument) was made by a famous Spanish street art artist, Okuda San Miguel.

“My project is unique in that I have the opportunity to work with people from other countries”

Foto Laura
Foto Laura

Laura from University of Minnesota-Twin Cities is doing an internship in a public hospital, Vall d’Hebron research institute on a project called MyHealth. The project aims to improve the healthcare of immigrant communities throughout the EU. She commented: “I have been given the task of writing the first drafts of some of the documents which is great and shows me that they have a lot of trust in my work. The experience has been amazing. The people I work with are really nice and patient with me learning Spanish. My project is unique in that I have the opportunity to work with people from other countries. We have a weekly video conference with our partners from all over the EU and I learn a lot about their working culture from those interactions.

How to grill calçots
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Foto calçotada 3

As one of our new day trips, students grilled a traditional Catalan meal, the calçotada. Calçots, are variety of green onions that are barbecued and dipped in romesco sauce. They are accompanied by pieces of meat and roasted bread slices. Calçots are eaten with your hands and you need to wear a bib. Students had a lot of fun with that!

Language + Culture, Spring 2018, Newsletter II

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We have already passed the spring mid-semester point. Students have been very busy with their classes, cultural activities, internships, and volunteering. Here it is some of their experiences:  

Mastering Paella cooking in Valencia

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Foto paella 2
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Foto paella 2

Language and Culture students went to Valencia for their weekend trip. They toured the old town, went to the modern Ciudad de las Ciencias y las Artes and participated in a paella cooking class. In there, they learned how to cook the traditional Valencian paella which is the mother of all paellas! Students really enjoyed it and they commented it was one of the highlights of the trip.

“An internship allows you to feel like you are living in a foreign land, not just studying/travelling”

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Ari, from University of Washington is doing an internship in a travel agency, Stoke Travel. He is doing marketing for the company; rewriting sales documents; and contacting other business in the travel space for potential partnerships. Ari commented: “ I really like my experience, I am learning a lot. An internship really allows you to feel like your living in a foreign land, not just studying / traveling.  You will make local friends, go to more native events and do many of the activities that interest you / what residents do.  By the end, you will be able to create a whole new life for yourself, which in the long run, will help you grasp who you truly are.”

Volunteering in a soup kitchen

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We offer students different volunteering opportunities to be able engage with the community and get a more immersed experience while in Barcelona. Christine from Vanderbilt University and Kelaiah from Cornell University participated in a soup kitchen in one of the neediest neighborhoods in Barcelona, the Raval. The soup kitchen provides breakfast and lunch to the needy people: most of them homeless or people with social exclusion problems. Christine commented: “Volunteering was great, I am glad I had the opportunity to partipate! 

03/15/2018

Global Architecture + Design, Spring 2018, Newsletter II

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REFLECTIONS AFTER THE END OF THE WORLD

In the context of the the Future Cities Design Studio, the students had the opportunity to do a site visit to the exhibition "After the End of the World" at the CCCB. During the exhibition, CIEE students had an immersive experience on how the earth of 2017 has irreversibly transformed into the Anthropocene planet after two centuries of human impact on natural systems. It was an exhibition about how we will reach the world of the latter half of the 21st century, and about our society’s responsibility to the generations who will be born and grow up in it. The result was a hypnotic and startling experience, that on the one hand exposes the traumas caused by the magnitude of the crisis and on the other speaks of the opportunity for change and of the pressing need for an intergenerational pact.

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WhatsApp Image 2018-02-06 at 18.19.46 (1)

Sketching Abroad

One of the most valuable experiences for an architecture student while abroad is the prospect of appreciating some of the highlights of the history of architecture on-site and then sketching them. Sketching may be a good way to better understand architecture, shapes, colors and proportions. Rohan, from CalPoly San Luis Obispo, spent last semester in Rome where he worked extensively on his sketches. Of course, now in Barcelona, he is still improving his technique and getting the most out of his experience in the city. In fact, Rohan spent some time sketching during our weekend trip to Valencia at the end of February. For now, have a look at his drawings from Valencia! More sketches from Barcelona will be included in the next newsletter.

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03/08/2018

Business + Culture, Spring 2018, Newsletter II

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Days go by so fast! We have already reached mid-semester, exams have taken place, classes have arrived their zenith and BC students have fully integrated within the city life. They are immersed in activities, classes and travelling. One of CIEE’s main endeavors is making students take advantage of the wealthy culture that Barcelona offers by organizing many of their classes and activities in the multiple museums or cultural sites scattered around the city. For example, they learn art history in the National Museum of Art, analyzing first hand the features of Romanesque Art, they immerse in local culture by going to the city markets during Spanish lessons, or even they learn about the history of Spanish Civil War by visiting an ancient air raid shelter.

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BC students have also enjoyed their CIEE organized weekend trip, visiting the beautiful city of Valencia. We explored its history by a guided tour around its ancient remains and modern urbanism, discovering the cathedral, the medieval silk market and touring its ‘modernista’ tiled market, where the guides showed us the traditional foods of the region.

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One of the highlights of the weekend trip was the Paella cooking workshop. Now we have excellent “maestros paelleros” to bring this delicious dish back home to delight their families and friends. 

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Check out the video from their amazing paella activity.

03/05/2018

Economics + Culture, Spring 2018, Newsletter II

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We are now at the halfway mark of the semester and our students have already taken their midterm exams. Adaptation to the local culture and host institutions has gone smoothly and now it's time to prepare for this second half of the semester and reflect on what was experienced and learned so far. That's why Peter, from the College of William and Mary, wanted to shared his impression on the language barrier while in Barcelona. Watch his video below!

On other side of the coin, as part of their academic experience, students traveled to the city of Valencia and, besides participating in a paella cooking class and visiting the most relevant areas in the city center, they were fortunate enough to also revel in one of its most popular local events. Known as Fallas, the city festival is basically a celebration of fire and pyrotechnics, symbolizing the concept of starting over, a fresh start for each year—and fire is the element used to clean up the past. One of the most popular activities of Fallas is the Exhibition (and contest) of the Ninots (a group of sculptures that usually criticize different aspects of society). The main idea is that all these figures are burned to symbolize the destruction of what they represent. Only one—the ninot indultat— is saved each year as the winner of a popular vote. This year, the Economics + Culture students not only went to see the exhibition but also joined in on the voting process. What was very curious to them was the fact that these sculptures often depicted politicians and celebrities, and of course, President Trump was widely represented there from both sarcastic and critical perspectives. Check out 3 ninots representing President Trump... Will any of them be saved or will all they all burn to the ground?

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WhatsApp Image 2018-03-05 at 10.44.40 (2)
WhatsApp Image 2018-03-05 at 10.44.40 (2)