|Henry & Dianne Ford
Maya (right front) with students
In recent issues of VISIONS, we have covered a few experiences of Nichelle
“Debbie” Edwards and her around the world experience in the Semester at Sea
program. Debbie is the daughter of Albert and Gwen Edwards, and recently they
were kind enough to invite us to their home and meet Debbie personally. That
pleasant experience was multiplied as we met other family members, including
daughter Maya, who is currently teaching in Spain, working primarily with American
students from Texas Tech and other colleges and universities. Below is an article
Maya shared with us that might be of interest to students (and their parents)
thinking of foreign study opportunities.
Welcome to the first edition of this semester's Cosas de Sevilla. Cosas de Sevilla
(Things from Sevilla) is a newsletter that comes out weekly about what is going on
at The Texas Tech Center in Sevilla. You can look forward to receiving it every
Thursday, with the rare exception being when we are on a group excursion. My
name is Sara Pink, and I work here in Sevilla helping to make this a special
experience for everyone here this semester.
Our fall semester group of 32 students descended upon Sevilla last Tuesday.
Immediately upon arrival to Sevilla, students were whisked off to the Hotel Fernando
III in the heart of the city for a two-day orientation session. After a nice three-
course lunch introducing the group to Spanish food, we headed over to The TTU
Center in Sevilla for an introductory orientation session and a meeting with a
Spanish cell phone company that rents mobile phones short term for students.
Many of you probably know this because you got phone calls shortly thereafter.
We went back to the hotel for dinner, and a fair number of the students couldn't
resist the urge for a first night out on the town.
Wednesday morning we got up and headed out on a long walking tour of Seville,
with the main purposes being to help the group fight jet lag and get their bearings a
bit. We saw many of the most emblematic sights of the city, such as the Giralda,
Cathedral, river and el Corte Ingles, of course. (If you can't buy it at the Corte
Inglés, chances are it is not for sale in Spain.) Lunch and brief siesta followed the
tour, and then we set off again for the second orientation meeting at school, where
we got down to the nitty gritty details about classes, safety and host family stays.
Thursday morning was The Big Event...the much-anticipated meeting of the host
families! The hotel lobby was a tumult of emotions as students met their Spanish
families, tried to communicate, and cram loads of luggage into compact cars and
taxis. Students spent the day getting to know their families and exploring their
neighborhoods. The next day we began classes here at The Center.
Saturday marked our very first group excursion to Itálica, a Roman city that dates
back to 205 B.C. It was originally established as a retirement home for wounded
soldiers who had fought in the decisive battle of Ilipa to defeat the Carthaginians.
First we saw the amphitheater, which was the third largest in the Roman empire.
Then we explored the streets of the city. Not much is left in the way of standing
structures in the city itself, so it took some imagination and the help of Dr. Inglis to
picture what the city was like during its heyday. The extremely well-preserved
mosaic floors helped us picture what the Roman houses looked like. One of the
highlights of the morning was a more recently discovered theater, constructed in
classical style. We headed back to Sevilla about 2:30, and students were free for
the rest of the weekend.
We've had a productive first week of classes here in Sevilla. Students are going
through all of the emotions that go along with learning a new language and
adapting to a new culture. Tomorrow we will travel to Jerez where we will learn all
about how the famous sherry wine is made, and then we will go to Chipiona for an
afternoon on the beach. You can look forward to reading all about these
adventures and more next week.
Publisher’s Comment: First we have to thank Albert and Gwen for creating an
environment that encourages learning and sharing. It was obvious during our visit
that we were in the presence of greatness, and that included other family members
(cousins, etc.) and friends. During our conversation with Maya (who studied in
Spain), she spoke about how important it is to try to learn something of the people
and customs where you visit. She also stressed the importance of networking when
seeking opportunities such as the one she enjoys. Our congratulations and best
wishes to the entire family. We are looking forward to more stories.
"Seeing the world not as it is, but as it can be"
"Where there is no vision, the people perish." - Proverbs 29:18
Your Success Newsletter - Nov-Dec, 2006 - Published Bi-Monthly
|Traveling, Learning &