Optimum Culture Shock

Hi friends! I’m typing this from Amman, Jordan, and I’m finally starting to believe that I might actually be studying abroad this semester. It feels like a dream. Apologies in advance for the photo quality—I took tons of pictures, but I’m a horrible photographer so you’ll have to use your imagination to fill in the …

Plot Twist!

Three days ago, I received a call from my SIT admissions counselor. “AnnaLeah, I’m gonna ask you to sit down,” she instructed me over the phone. “I have some news that will shake your world.” This wasn’t the first time I had talked with my admissions counselor. She had been supportive in my application and …

Returning Home: Final Semester Thoughts

Alas, the semester has come to an end, and I have safely returned to the same time zone as my friends and family. Upon returning, with new memories and pictures stored on my phone, I couldn’t help but be nostalgic about the experiences that have characterized the last few months. I must admit, though it …

SIT Independent Study Project Reflections

As mentioned in a previous post, one of the hallmarks of SIT’s Study Abroad Program is its Independent Study Project (ISP). Since that post, I have officially turned in my paper, closed all of my computer tabs, and paid for my last cup of coffee at Boréal. As you can imagine, it was a bittersweet …

Living with a Host Parent

One of the best components of my study abroad program was living with a host parent. I am super blessed to have had the opportunity to meet and live with my host mom. She is energetic, personable, and extremely kind. She was interested in me and my life, and she even opened up her home …

Putting the “study” in “study abroad”

At Hope, I have a few places on campus that I have designated as top-study locations.  If you know me, or have routinely seen an over-stuffed blue and maroon backpack in the same places, you would know that my favorite study spots are: the Bultman Student Center, Phelps Dining Hall, Ferris Coffee, and, of course, …

Foreign Travel and Study Abroad: What’s the catch?

Switzerland is conveniently located in the center of Europe, allowing access to a multitude of sub-regions within the European continent….and I may or may not have taken advantage of this characteristic already. Let’s recap:  Where I have traveled to, since the beginning of the semester? Bern, Switzerland Munich, Germany Paris, France Brussels, Belgium Grindelwald, Switzerland …

Sabbath Solo Trip to Grindelwald

As I have mentioned in some of my other posts, I enjoy taking solo trips. Inspired by my successful outing to the Musée d’Orsay in Paris, I decided to take the Sabbath to rest and recuperate (from the full week of classes and an academic trip that were now behind me).  But what did this …

A Weekend in Paris

Friday: Friday was my first fully-free day in Paris. During the summer of 2021, I participated in an immersive French program in Vermont, where I fully carried out day-to-day interactions in French and developed deep friendships with other students. One of my friends from that program is currently living and teaching in Paris… so of …

“Fall”ing in Love with a New Routine

Fall is my favorite season– it always has been, and, most likely, always will be. Most of it I can attribute to growing up on the east coast, where crisp, mountain air, maple leaf lattes, listening to Carole King and The Lumineers during a morning walk, and nature’s brilliant colors work to create a cozy, …