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164 posts categorized "Newsletters"

10/05/2017

Language + Culture,. Fall 2017, Newsletter I

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It has been almost a month since Language and Culture students arrived in Barcelona! They have been very busy with their classes, getting to know the city and participating in a lot of cultural events such as guided city tours; day trips, activities with their Guardian Angels; and their weekend trip among others.

Here there are some details:

Enjoying local traditions at the Barcelona Patron Festival

Students had the great opportunity to enjoy the 4-day festival of Barcelona in honor of its patron: Mercè. Some of the local traditions they participated were: castellers (human castles); correfoc; gegants (giants) or the famous fireworks with music and a water fountain show.

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Local budies for local integration

Our Guardian Angels (GA’s) are Spanish students that help our students to get familiarize with the city, to manage practical matters the first weeks, and to get integrated better in the Spanish culture. LA students already enjoyed a Tapas Night, a beach volleyball game, a flea market visit or a tour to Montjuïc Castle, among others.

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Basque Country: Gastronomy, Art, and Game of Thrones scenarios

Language and Culture students travelled this semester to Bilbao-San Sebastián in the Basque Country in northern Spain. The visited the world-famous Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao, toured Bilbao and San Sebastian old towns, did a local tapas workshop and recreated scenes of the Game of Thrones in San Juan de Gaztelugatxe. Students learned about the differences between regions in Spain and they really enjoyed the trip.

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Liberal Arts, Fall 2017, Newsletter I

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It has been almost a month since Liberal Arts students arrived at Barcelona! They have been very busy with orientation, getting to know the city and their local institution, Pompeu Fabra and participating in a lot of cultural events. Here there are some details:

Orientation and UPF Welcome Session

During the three-day orientation, students had the opportunity to meet the group; attend the Welcome, Safety and Security talk, Academics and Cultural Activities talk, start to get familiarize with the city, meet their Guardian Angels and tour the Gothic Quarter. 

Students also attended the host institution, Pompeu Fabra, welcome session where they learned about the university; academic offerings; the presentation of the Hispanic and European Studies Program; and a tour to campus.

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Practical Spanish: let’s go grocery shopping!

In order to practice the language in a useful context, CIEE Liberal Arts Spanish classes took students to the groceries! We went to a local market and students had to buy something using idiomatic expressions, and they had to interview a clerk and a customer to get to interact with locals. They enjoyed the activity and we had a picnic afterwards with all the goods students bought!

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Independence Referendum: What’s happening in Barcelona?

Due to the current political events in Barcelona, we organized a Talk-Debate about the Catalan Independence Referendum in our Study Center. The talk was conducted by three CIEE professors: Jesús Marchán, History professor; Eduard Tunyí, Politics professor; and Ferrán Macipe, Economics professors. Students had the opportunity to understand the situation from different perspectives. They also asked a lot of questions and there was a very productive debate afterwards.

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10/03/2017

Architecture + Design, Fall 2017, Newsletter I

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EXPERIENCE(S)

A new semester for Architecture + Design has begun and students, aside from adapting to the city during the first days of orientation, have already started classes. In the core course, “The City and the Visual Culture”, students are learning first-hand about the urban development of Barcelona. In a combination of class lectures and activities, they visited some key places in the city to better understand this transformation, like Ciutadella Park and Montjuïc Mountain, where the Universal World fair took place in Barcelona in 1929.

Besides viewing some of the major constructions and facilities, such as the National Palace or Plaça de Espanya, students also had the chance to visit one of the most important historical structures from that World Fair: the German Pavillion by Mies van der Rohe. Considered one of the four main buildings of the Modern Movement, the magic and relevance it holds in the history of architecture is more than well-known due to its symbolic significance and the revolutionary design of its time. In fact, all the students had already studied it in some of their classes. Even though it was dismantled after the fair, a replica was built in 1986 by three Catalan architects in order to emphasize its architectural importance. 

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Also, Jessica and Jack, from Tulane University, wanted to highlight some of their first impressions of the program. Check them out in this video!

10/02/2017

Global Architecture + Design, Fall 2017, Newsletter I

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It’s already been a month into the program and the Global Architecture + Design students are fully immersed in their classes and their projects at the IaaC. This semester, one of the first activities that took place in the Future Cities Studio was a class presentation and debate called “What is architecture?”. Its purpose was to give them a deeper understanding of the discipline and their own personal perspectives. They needed to define how they understood architecture in ten words and select one of their previous projects to explain their ideas. The result was a wide approach to architecture, a first step in expanding their conception of this art.

Alice, from the University of Massachusetts Amherst explained her vision to us in the following video. Check it out! 

Images from Alice's project "Student's bridges", project selected to explain her understanding of what architecture is.Gad2Gad1

09/22/2017

Business + Culture, Fall 2017, Newsletter I

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Fall semester has just begun and Business students are getting to know the city and its culture. Since they’ve arrived they have been busy with orientation sessions, getting to know CIEE staff and getting ready for the beginning of their classes. This semester we have a group of Business students who attend the Universitat de Vic-BAU campus in Barcelona (Design College of Barcelona). BAU was born in 1989. Located in Barcelona, in 2003 BAU commits itself to a move to the 22@ district, now the innovation and design district of the city. BAU has consolidated its proposal by affiliating itself with the University of Vic-Central University of Catalonia (UVIC-UCC).

The orientation session for BC-UVic students took place at BAU campus where students will attend classes very soon. During the academic welcome carried out by Joan Albert Garcia, Coordinator of the Stud Abroad Program Business, Design and Innovation, students received a backpack with useful information about their classes at UVic-BAU and an insight of the classes they are taking.

The classes offered this fall semester are: Design Thinking, Digital Business, Global Marketing, Leadership, Business and Society, Brand Design, Marketing and Fashion and Start-UP Creation.

After the academic session students had a tour around the premises. They were happy to see such a unique and modern campus.

In a few days classes will start!

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First Day of Class

Spain is known for its outdoor life. In their free time locals hang out in terraces and cafeterias. In order to survive in Barcelona one must know how to order a café con leche. During their first Spanish class at CIEE, John (BC-UVic) and Kyle (BC-ESCI) did an activity (called survival Spanish) in the whereabouts of CIEE. They had to talk to clients and waiters and ask them some questions. It was fun and they learned a lot!

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Economics + Culture, Fall 2017, Newsletter I

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First day: Orientation

The students participating in the CIEE Economics and Culture Program arrived the first week of September to Barcelona. After a long flight they headed towards the orientation hotel where CIEE staff was happy to welcome them. What a thrill was to meet students from other programs! They were happy to chat with their flat mates or compañeros de residencia. Students in homestay had their first encounter with their host families. Their adventure had just begun!

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CIEE students during the orientation session. 

Getting to know Barcelona

CIEE students still had some days before the beginning of classes. In order to make better use of their time they went out with their Guardian Angels who took them out to explore the city.  Some of the touristic sites they visited were: The Cathedral, and The Montjuic Castle.

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At the Cathedral.

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Exploring Cataluña

Catalonia (Cataluña in Spanish) is located on the northeastern extremity of the Iberian Peninsula. It has four provinces: Barcelona, Girona, Lleida, and Tarragona. The cultural richness of Catalonia is well known and CIEE students wanted to discover it for themselves. On their first weekend CIEE staff organized several day trips.

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The Roman Amphitheatre in Tarragona. 

The UPF Campus (Universitat Pompeu Fabra)

Classes are about to start at the UPF, and Economics and Culture students attended their academic orientation. They got their identity cards, visited the University Library, had a campus tour and they got a little taste of their academic life in Barcelona!

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07/21/2017

Summer Programs, 2017, Newsletter I

 The value of a homestay

Ths summer programs are passing fast and some students have already finished their experience abroad in Barcelona. From the many experiences that a student goes through while abroad, living in a homestay is the one that makes students get immersed in the local culture and expand their intercultural competence and their skills to get adapted to a new environment. This is the case of three of our students and host families who want to share some experiences that show the students' engagement with the local culture.

Sharing the music

Kalen, from University of Colorado Boulder, was living with Carmen and Ramón. Besides spending their time together talking around the table for dinner, Kalen and Ramon share their interest in music. Kalen likes to sing and Ramon plays the guitar, so they practiced their hobbies together. What a great match!

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Sharing experiences

Taylor, from Texas A&M University, shared in her personal blog the importance of spending time with the host family. In her case, she had the chance to spend a day with some of the host family's relatives in a house outside Barcelona, far away for the city life. Taylor could experience first hand how it is to live in a bilingual society in which people speak two languages (Catalan and Spanish). As Taylor explained,  "...speaking your non-native language and see what you’ll find. I guarantee it’ll be worth it".  If you want to check the whole story, please, visit Taylor's blog.

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 Sharing the food

Nikki, from University of Minnesota-Twin Cities, was so grateful and happy living with her host family that one day, Agnes, her host mother, offered her a particular cooking class on Spanish and Catalan dishes, as paella. Nikki did an outstanding performance and she shared such a delicious plate with all the family. Check here the results!

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05/10/2017

GLOBAL ARCHITECTURE + DESIGN, SPRING 2017, NEWSLETTER III

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Spring semester has already finished and Global Architecture students have spent the time of their lives while abroad. As expected, they have learned new approaches to architecture and design at the IaaC, and they have also taken advantage of their time abroad to explore and discover other places around Barcelona and Europe. In the meantime, they have also discovered themselves to a great extent!

Final presentations

Students had been asked to improve the urban quality conditions of the “Superblock” initiative in the 22@ neighborhood of Barcelona. After their process of research, each of the four groups of students came up with an original and innovative solution for solving a different urban problem. They also fabricated prototypes for their proposed solutions.

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BEYOND ACADEMICS...

A fundamental part of being abroad resides in the potential for students to get to know themselves better. By being out of their comfort zone, students are put to test their intercultural skills and, generally speaking, to expand their horizons. Travelling, discovering new places and experiencing new realities first-hand is without a doubt a first step to achieving this. In the short videos below, Ryan and Connor (CalPoly, San Luis Obispo) talk about their interest in travelling while abroad, as well as about the many CIEE-organized cultural activities and trips. Check those out!

 

Language + Culture, Spring 2017, Newsletter III

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Spring semester is gone and students are back home. In our last newsletter, you can learn about student’s internship experiences and last field trips. We hope students now are  better global citizens after their enriching cultural experience in Barcelona!

 “My internship has allowed me to grow and evolve in a way that wouldn´t be possible in the US”

Stephen did an internship at WholeGenix, research and development startup focusing on whole genome sequencing and how it can help in the treatment of diseases like cancer. He commented about his experience: “I am really enjoying my internship and I think it has allowed me to grow and evolve in a way that wouldn't be possible in an internship in the U.S.  I’ve learned a lot about the workplace culture in Barcelona, the relationships are more casual and personal while still maintaining professionalism and diligence in their work, which is something I quite liked.”

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Stephen from Rutgers University and his internship placement

“Being of two very distinctly different cultures I have gained a new perspective on the professional world”

Richard did his internship with the SOLIDUS project that is part of CREA, a research organization in Europe. SOLIDUS focuses on investigating how to improve the social inequality and psychological wellbeing of European citizens.

This is what he commented about his experience:  “CREA so far has been a very enlightening experience as it is my first time interning in a foreign country. I have already learnt so much no just from the nature of my research-based work, but also from simply interacting with my new colleagues. Being of two very distinctly different cultures, I have gained a new perspective on the professional world. I no longer leave immediately after work, but I wait on my colleagues. Those who also ride the metro, we take the metro back together. When there is not silence onset by our intense focus on the task, we are discussing many topics from politics to our cultural differences.  Also, we eat lunch together, all of us. It seems to me that it is a very team based approach to work; we are all in this together so let’s all try to be friends.

As it pertains to my work, I am currently summarizing the research findings of CREAU on acts of solidarity across Europe. I am assessing the political and social impact of these projects. It is a good way for me to become better acquainted with Europe and the work of my company. If have seen my interesting projects from Learning Communities trying to better the standard of educations and non-profit refugee assistance organizations.”

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Richard from University of Washington-Seattle with his co-workers

Street Art Tour

Students at the CIEE course Urban Culture in Contemporary Barcelona had

the opportunity to attend a street art tour around Barcelona. The tour showcases Barcelona’s historical neighborhoods of El Borne and the Gothic Quarter highlighting many of the classical, earlier examples of Barcelona street art found all over its walls with some remaining for years, and some even decades. Many students highlighted this field trip as their favorite one!

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Liberal Arts, Spring 2017, Newsletter III

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Spring semester is gone and we wish students had an enriching experience in Barcelona. Here it is some of the activities they did at the last part of the semester.  

Students get inspiration through Service Learning

At the re-entry workshop students were asked to share their best memory of their study abroad experience. Several students assured it was their service learning/community engagement activity they did as part of their CIEE Advanced Grammar, Composition and Conversation II class.

Students at the he service learning project is part of the CIEE Advanced Grammar, Composition and Conversation II class, participated in a service learning project at a local elementary school, Escola Collserola with children from 1st -6th  grades.  

Jon from Vanderbilt University brought his guitar and sang songs with 2nd graders; Nopell from Fordham University practice vocabulary and sang songs with 1st graders; Cate from Lehigh University did an oral presentation 4th of July for 4th graders; Grace from Vanderbilt University showed 5th graders her abilities in cheerleading; and Gaby from Occidental College talked about California to 6th graders. Children were thrilled and they were very interested in asking questions about the American society.

After their volunteering students interviewed the school principal and the Academic Committee to learn about the educational system and compare it to the American one. This project is also part of the intercultural competence component that CIEE embraces in our program.

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Re-entry Workshop to learn strategies for adjustment back in the States

The last day of the semester, LA students participated in the Re-entry Workshop, a session dedicated to reflect on their experience studying abroad in Barcelona, to understand the re-entry process and challenges, to learn strategies for adjustment and ways to stay globally engaged and how to incorporate their experiences into their daily lives. One of the activities consisted in sharing their best memory of the semester while forming a web between them, symbolizing their interconnection. Some of the best memories of our students shared were related to their experiences living with a host family, meeting new friends and travelling.

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In Barcelona, students learned how to appreciate art

Students at the Catalonia and Spain Through the Arts class had to do a video project about their appreciation of art in Barcelona. Professor Raquel Crisóstomo had a contest called BANART and selected the best 3 videos. Here it is an example:

 

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