Where in the World is Miami Wednesday: San Sebastian, Spain

Megan Mooney on a study abroad program
Megan Mooney on a study abroad program

By Megan Schulte, student study abroad ambassador

What program you are on: USAC San Sebastian/Donostia

If it’s a Miami or Third-Party program: Third-Party

What you are studying with your program: Spanish, Basque Language and Culture, and Art History. Oh, and also Surfing. That was an actual class.

Why you chose the program that you did: My minor is in Spanish, which I was hoping to improve on, so I asked one of my Spanish professors for advice and where I should go. She said San Sebastian was one of the most beautiful places in Spain and it’s also a little off the beaten path which was a plus for me as well.

Coolest place/thing that you have done so far: I had a picnic with baguettes, French cheese, and great friends in front of the Eiffel Tower. But tied with that would probably be hiking up and over a mountain to reach San Juan de Gaztelugatxe, or for Game of Thrones fans, Dragonstone. It’s an old church built on an island with 241 steps and once you get to the top the tradition is to ring the church bell three times, which I did. It was an incredible day.

Favorite part about the program: The classes are a little more relaxed here, or maybe it’s just that I live a ten minutes walk away from the beach, but even during stressful times like midterms it’s easy to find somewhere beautiful to enjoy. I’ve also never been outside the country before, except for Canada (which I don’t really count), so this program has also just given me the chance to step out into the world and see it in a different light.

How study away has affected/changed you so far: I have learned that learning a language takes a lot more effort than I expected, and even though I’m not fluent yet, it has already been very worth it. I’ve also noticed that the way I think about the world and other people has changed in lots of little ways, and I’ve mainly become more aware of my own preconceptions about different places and how I’m more than not generally wrong. I’ve really just realized that I’m young and I have a lot to learn and a lot of places to go.

Catch us next week as we continue to travel around the world to feature the amazing opportunities that Miami students are taking!
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