Experiences with Cuban Piropo Culture

Wow, I can’t believe it’s already March; I feel like time has been slipping away since the start of the semester. I definitely feel more socially and academically acclimated than I did after my first post. The workload feels a lot more similar to Amherst, but perhaps more difficult since everything is in Spanish. A year ago, I would have never thought I would be able to read and write in Spanish like I am now! I’m excited that I …

When Global Means Staying Home, Too

Written by Rachael Hanley, Director of Social and New Media in the Amherst College Office of Communications (Originally published on the Amherst College website, 27 February 2018)     When Rebecca Houedjissi ’18 decided to take a semester away from Amherst College, international study was an option—but not the only one. After considering a range of choices, Houedjissi decided to try a semester at Howard University, a historically black college that she had once considered attending full time. Howard offered …

From Amherst, with Mixed Feelings

I took my first step out of Logan airport, looked around me and sighed deeply. I was surrounded by mountains of snow. There was black ice everywhere. Temperatures were sub-zero. The wind was frigid. My nostrils soon went numb…even breathing hurt. It was at that moment that I began asking myself precisely why I had come back. The next week, I was greeted by something called a “bomb cyclone.” This was indeed as fearsome as the name suggests, and I …

Are you staying for Carnival?

“Vôce vai ficar para Carnaval?”  Are you staying for Carnival? When I first arrived in Rio de Janeiro over a month ago this was always the second or third question people would ask me. Cariocas (people originally from Rio de Janeiro) would ask because they are used to having foreigners, both from other countries or other parts of Brazil, ambush their city during this pre-lent festivity. In fact, I learned a lot of cariocas try to leave their own city …

Sherman Katz ’65

Interviewed by Konso Mbakire ’18       On Tuesday, March 28th 2017, the Amherst College Global Education Office had the pleasure of welcoming Sherman Katz, Class of ’65, to our campus. In his day, Amherst looked very different; it had a core curriculum, no women, and no study abroad office. He found out about a year-long study abroad program in Sweden but there was no Study Abroad system in place to accommodate his desire. So he petitioned his program, …

Smiles, Showers and the Shadow of Communism

        When I walk into a store, what do I say? Is it rude to say hello in the English Language? What about saying goodbye in English? What about ordering food?  “I’d like to have so and so.” Or I could try in Czech: “Dam si Smažený vepřový řízek s bramborovým salátem.” Whenever I try saying the actual words, the waiters don’t understand me. O.K., I say to myself, then I proceed to point at the thingy …

My Return to Cuba

  Hello! Welcome to my first official post during my second semester in Havana, Cuba. I can’t believe how fast the first four weeks of the new semester went by! I was initially nervous to start another semester in Havana with a new program. How would I maintain old connections while also trying to fully integrate myself within a new group of people and new academic space? As the Brown CASA program is a lot more academically challenging than my …

Esperanza in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Oi gente! My name is Esperanza, and this semester I am studying in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Originally, I’m from Las Cruces, New Mexico. In Amherst, I am a class of 2019 Environmental Studies major. Here in Rio, I’m a student at Pontifícia Universidade Católica through SUNY New Paltz. I’m most excited to improve my Portuguese, study forest ecology, and embrace my inner beach bum.

Julia in Malawi, Italy, and India

Hey everyone! My name is Julia Herion-Cruz and I am a junior from Taos, New Mexico. I study Environmental Studies at Amherst and have been involved in La Causa and La Casa Latinx Culture House on campus. This semester I will be studying Food Security issues in Malawi, India, and Italy through an International Honors Program (IHP) called Rethinking Food Security. Join me as I share my experiences navigating three completely different countries and some insights I gain along the …

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