UCT Academics

One of the biggest culture shocks I’ve had so far would have to be school at UCT. Even starting out at orientation and registration it was much different. In the US most schools have an online registration process near the end of the previous semester in order to sign up for classes and figure out […]

The Garden Route

Last weekend was full of crossing things off the South Africa bucket list! IES organized a road trip for us along the Garden Route, a stretch of southern South Africa that is made up of farmland and some incredible sights. We had an early morning Friday to drive to our first destination, Wilderness. Wilderness is […]

The Mother City

I arrived safely in Cape Town a week ago for my fall semester at University of Cape Town and began what I hope will be the adventure of a lifetime! When I landed, I met my study abroad program director at the airport to drive to where I’ll be staying for the semester: a small […]

It’s Not Goodbye, It’s See You Later

It has been four days since I returned home from the Mother City.  It has been a pleasure to reflect on my time abroad while embracing the reverse culture shock of home. Thank You Cape Town: for your beauty for your diverse cultures for your exotic flavors for your mountains overlooking the ocean for your […]

Destination: Desert

Unlike finals week at Hope, finals at the University of Cape Town span over a three-week time frame.  I somehow ended up with a 10 day gap in between exams and decided to make the most of it 🙂 We traveled North to the recently declared country of Namibia; a past colony of Germany and […]

Leaving the Island

Cape Town is often considered the ‘gateway to Africa’.  Even with diverse backgrounds and beliefs, a common ideology when viewing the rest of the nation and the surrounding countries is present.   While Cape Townians pride themselves on uncovering truths and opening up deep conversations, the lack of the ‘rural-minded’ individual has instituted a specific story about […]

The Cape of Storms; the Ultimate Summertime Paradise

Long before the Dutch and English colonized South Africa, the Portuguese sailor Bartolomeu Dias discovered the Cape of Good Hope as a harbor of refuge from the treacherous storms along the coast of southern Africa. Seeking a passage for trade to India,  Dias mistakenly found the lush and beautiful peninsula while mother nature tested the limits […]

A Land of Extreme Beauty; Garden Route Road Trip

         Pictured above from my adventure on the  Garden Route tour and a hike up Table Mountain is an African elephant and a dassie.  It isn’t hard to tell the two animals apart; on the surface their appearances are as different as night and day.  However, if you were to delve deeper […]

This Time for Africa

Life of a Biochemical Engineering Major involves late night study sessions, long lab reports, and an endless swamp of assignments.  I love the challenge every semester brings but this time I will be embarking on a different kind of academic adventure; one that’s even more life-changing. I’m trading in my thick text books for biographies […]

Reflecting on my time in South Africa: A Changed Person – A Changed Perspective

Almost five months.  I lived in South Africa for almost 5 months. I could hardly imagine so much fun and pain, so many learned lessons  and new perspectives, so many breathtaking and tragic sights all could be crammed into a mere 150 days. Yet I experienced all that and more. The John Luke that stepped onto the […]