Spain: Good-bye, Barcelona!

Submitted by Ceara Stewart on the 2019 fall semester study abroad program in Barcelona, Spain…

This is an email containing my wrap-up of my time in Barcelona. It was an amazing three months and I am extremely sad, but also happy to be going home. This place has been my life for the whole semester and I have gotten to know the city so well. I became a local who knew her way around public transport, where to get the best coffee or tapas, and where the best sunset views were. I was able to travel to 8 countries and visit 4 Spanish cities other than Barcelona.

I will miss all the professors that widened my global experience and challenged me. I will miss all the Art Nouveau, especially Gaudí’s fine works (I will be back in 2026 to see you finished Sagrada Família, don’t you worry). I will miss the Spanish food and the people who always would walk up to me and speak Catalan (thank you sir who asked me directions in Catalan and when I said I only spoke Spanish you turned around and left, I will miss you). Yes, maybe there were times or hardship when public transport got messed up because of the Independence riots.

I will miss my host mom Gloria and her amazing traditional Spanish cooking, and her little dog Samba, and her daughter Claudia. Gloria and Claudia helped my Spanish so much and pushed me daily to branch out and become more comfortable speaking. I cannot wait to come back and catch up with them. Along with my host family, I met so many people both from UD and from other universities that changed my life for the better. I think I will miss those people the most because I will be back to Barcelona, but the people who shaped my experience are going back to their own lives and it will be hard to not to be able to message “hey let’s meet up and get tapas”. So good-bye Barcelona. Thank you for an amazing time and it will be something I will carry in my heart forever.

View from the Top of Los Bunkers
View from the top of Los Bunkers
Views from Parc Güell
Churros and Chocolate that my host mom and I got at a little Sunday market
My host mom, Gloria, Me and Gloria’s friend, Nati
Some of the amazing people I met during my time in Barcelona







Visit to Berlin, Germany

Submitted by Caitlin Werner on the 2019 fall semester study abroad program in Granada, Spain…

On our long weekend, a few friends and I traveled to Berlin, Germany. It was a very impactful experience as Berlin is a important place in history. In this photo, we are at the East Side Gallery of the Berlin Wall in front of one of their most famous paintings. I am sad that this was my last trip, but I am very happy that I got to visit Germany, a country that I always wanted to go to.

Spain: Class Excursion

Submitted by Nicole Caracciolo on the 2019 fall semester study abroad program in Barcelona, Spain…

Over the weekend, SAE took us to Seville and Cordoba. We got to see so many amazing things there and also had some free time of our own. Being in the south of Spain made me realize how much I love this country and want to see more of it someday. Of course, Barcelona has already made Spain important to me, but seeing a completely different aspect of the country made me even more intrigued. I never traveled much before coming abroad besides a couple of tropical vacations and most of the traveling I have done here has been to major city centers (which are still super cool and exciting to see!). Seville was just so quaint and beautiful. It made me see that I want to eventually travel to smaller towns with lots of soul and character. I think these places have so much to teach us.

This is the terrace of Palau Guell. My professor took our class here for a field trip.

Spain: Change of Plans

Submitted by Nicole Caracciolo on the 2019 fall semester study abroad program in Barcelona, Spain…

This week, I had plans to go to Venice for the weekend. They unfortunately needed to be changed ASAP because Venice was in a state of emergency due to flooding. We were flying to Rome on Sunday for the day, so I did already have a flight home and easily booked an outbound flight to Rome to change my plans. My roommate who I was going with no longer wanted to go to Italy because she did not want to spend money on another flight, so I was going to Rome alone. I was back and forth about the idea of traveling to a country completely alone for the weekend because this was something I have never done before. My father wasn’t too fond of the idea and I did not even tell my mother about it, so that made me even more unsure about the idea. It ended up working out that another friend of mine was in the same boat as me and decided to go to Rome for the weekend. However, in the future, I feel like I should be more confident in myself and try to make decisions without the input of others. I am smart and probably would have been okay by myself for a couple of days in Rome, but let my Dad’s opinions get to my head and I knew my Mom would have never supported that plan.

I visited Casa Batlló, one of Gaudí’s most famous works in Barcelona.


Denmark: Two Weeks Out

Submitted by Zachary Shulman on the 2019 fall semester DIS program in Copenhagen, Denmark…

At this point in my semester, no matter the semester, I always like to look back and think about the broad themes and lessons I learned from it. I’ve been doing this since I studied in Rome, Italy during my first semester of college. Each semester provides an abundance of opportunities to learn new things about yourself, your interests, and your place in the world. In the midst of four papers, two presentations, and a two-hour exam, I’ll have to find some time to squeeze in those thoughts.

The last several weeks have been relatively dormant. I had the opportunity to visit London and meet up with some fellow World Scholars and friends from UD. That will most likely be my last trip outside of Denmark, which means the remainder of my free time will be spent appreciating the country in which I’ve lived for the past three and a half months. I am extremely grateful that I was able to see as much of it as I was, in a huge part due to the determination of my host father in introducing us to Denmark and all of the little treasures it has to offer.

Some people consider Denmark’s small size to be a point of weakness, but in my opinion, its compact size allows its citizens to feel deeply connected to its natural beauty, landmarks, locations, seasons, and everything else that makes the country unique. Moving from one of the largest countries on the planet to one significantly smaller, it has given me a sense of coziness that I’m sure the Danes feel on a day-to-day basis.

Likewise, the introduction of cold weather to the semester has pushed me downstairs to the family room, where I have been doing homework alongside my housemate, socializing with my host family, watching movies and television, and enjoying dessert with some coffee or tea. I’m sure this is what the Danes refer to as “hygge”: appreciating the current moment with those around you and forgetting all of your worries for the moment. I hope, more than anything, that I can bring this ability to appreciate the present moment home with me.

A Christmas market near Nyhavn, Denmark’s famous inner harbor
One of the dogs of my homestay, Milo

Spain: Thanksgiving with Friends

Submitted by Caitlin Werner on the 2019 fall semester study abroad program in Granada, Spain…

This past week, we had our Thanksgiving dinner with our program. I absolutely loved it. I am so grateful that I could still celebrate my favorite holiday with my friends who have become my second family here in Granada. As my time here is wrapping up, I am trying to enjoy every last bit of it and spend as much time as I can with my friends.

England: Bristol

Submitted by Danielle Tahan on the 2019 fall semester program in London, England…

I am elated that I ventured to Bristol this weekend, as it was a goal of mine to explore while in England. My favorite UK television series, Skins, was set in Bristol. The series is extremely sentimental to me, so it was extraordinary to visit this location. Bristol is a smaller city surrounded by the countryside, yet is still very lively. I noticed that it is much more of a local area, compared to London in which its diverse nature encompasses more people of different nationalities.

We were able to explore the harbourside and center of the city. I adored the harbor and its tranquil vibe with beautiful views of the colorful neighborhoods. Then the center of the city provided such a lively atmosphere, which was a pleasant contrast from the harbourside. I fell in love with this city and I am inspired to find my way back here, as it is somewhere I would love to live.

Bristol harbourside
Bristol harbourside
Festive display in Cabot Circus


Spain: Adaptability

Submitted by Nicole Caracciolo on the 2019 fall semester study abroad program in Barcelona, Spain…

My friends and I spent our weekend in Dublin and planned a trip to the Cliffs of Moher for Friday, November 8th. We had to wake up very early because the group was meeting at 6:50 am for a 7:30 AM departure. There were two buses to fill up what seemed like way too many people for the amount of space provided. Once the buses were almost full, they asked for people to split up in 2s or 1s, but we could not because we were 5 people. We somehow managed to be the only people without seats on either bus because people behind us were in smaller groups and were able to split easily. There was no representative from the tour company and the bus drivers had nothing to do with the situation, so they could not explain why there were not enough seats for us. They would not allow us to squeeze either. It was really just the luck of the draw. Had we been the first people in line this would not have happened, but our placement in line completely screwed us. So, the tour left without us. Thankfully, we were able to find another tour that was leaving at 8 AM and we made sure we were the first people on the bus. We ended up having the most amazing time and were actually thankful we ended up on that tour instead of the original plan. I learned that you must be adaptable in all situations because you never know how things are going to work out. That was the most unpredictable thing that could have happened and we were able to be flexible and make a new plan on the spot.

I visited Montserrat, which is a monastery built in the mountains of Barcelona.

England: Volunteering while Abroad

Submitted by Danielle Tahan on the 2019 fall semester program in London, England…

This past week, I volunteered with Centrepoint, a UK charity that supports homeless youth. As someone who strongly values service work, I have been lacking in that area of my identity while being abroad. So, I was glad to take the opportunity when CAPA connected me with their Sleep Out Event in Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park. This event is a fundraising challenge to support youth who are sleeping rough. Individuals and companies participate by raising money and sleeping in a tent for one night. I was able to assist in the set-up of the event, in which we sorted out the sleeping accomodations for the participants. With the power of a set of passionate volunteers, we situated the tarp and hundreds of sleeping bags for the participants.

It is always incredible to witness what a group of dedicated people can accomplish. I was able to reflect on the universal nature of service work, particularly in the area of homelessness. Since homelessness is very prevalent in many countries, there must be a systemic root to this issue. I was particularly interested in getting involved with this event because I have witnessed the extent of the issue while being in London. Unfortunately, because I have been adjusting to all of my other experiences while abroad, I have not acted on the issue. I am encouraged to improve my advocacy with homelessness during the rest of my time here and when I return home. I plan on incorporating the issue of homelessness in my project for CAPA’s Diversity Advocate Program, so I am glad that I gained direct experience through this volunteer event!

Check out Centrepoint’s work here:

Centrepoint Sleep Out Event at Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park
Tent prior to our service
Sleeping bags that we set up for Sleep Out participants


Spain: Halloween

Submitted by Nicole Caracciolo on the 2019 fall semester study abroad program in Barcelona, Spain…

This was my first time spending a holiday in another country. Halloween is celebrated much less intensely in Spain than in the United States. During the day, I saw a decent amount of very young children who were dressed in costume, but no one really above the age of 7 or 8 years old. Only some shops and restaurants had decorations. Trick or treating is not nearly as popular here because everyone lives in apartments, so it would be very difficult to get in and out of the residences if you don’t live there. The only instance of trick-or-treating I saw was in a convenience store in my neighborhood. About 5 middle school-aged children came dressed in costumes and the cashier gave each of them a couple of pieces of candy. They celebrate All Saint’s Day (the next day, November 1st) more seriously. Many businesses are closed and they sell their traditional chestnuts on the streets.

My friends and I went to a Barcelona soccer game! We had a great time and went to drink out of the FCB fountain on La Rambla after Barcelona took the win.