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“I was constantly looking forward to each day and each new experience.  I was even looking forward to going to class! The professors at The University of Valladolid were, for lack of a better word, incredible. They helped me and my classmates understand Spanish and how to use it more effectively…   By far, my favorite part of the trip was the evening trips to different cities throughout Spain. We went on at least one trip a week, all to different cities! There is no way that if I came by myself I would have been able to go and see all of the cities and what they had to offer…

 Rachel Bodenschatz, Junior, History & English Major, Spanish Minor

“It has been the most challenging time of my life, learning to communicate all over again. Therefore, I have learned a lot about myself, my view of the world, and about Spanish… I can laugh at myself over silly things. I also can stand on my own two feet, and make decisions for myself. I am more tolerant of others’ beliefs and lifestyles, and more confident and comfortable in my own. I can disagree with people over topics, but still get along with them as people.  I can express myself clearly and concisely. This is the most recent gift from Spain… I am becoming a more rounded human-being, able to express myself in two languages. This trip has changed my life by opening my eyes up to new things. I will never forget this adventure.”

Micah Palitto, Junior, Education Major- AYA Integrated Language Arts, Spanish Minor

The classes at the Universidad de Valladolid are nothing less than interesting! The first day we came to the University we were welcomed with open arms from every one of the professors. They have been teaching us many new thing that I’ve never learned before and the classes were always taught at a pace where we were able to understand everything they said. But the one thing that happened earlier on in the program was the fact that I missed the United States. But with going to different activities and being able to occupy my time with new and exciting things I was able to experience something that not many people have the opportunity to do in their lifetime. I would recommend this program to ANY student that attends IUP. I will never forget my time I’ve spent in Spain.

Keylie Smith. Indiana University of Pennsylvania 

Studying in Valladolid is a great opportunity for anyone that would like to become fluent in Spanish or would like to study the language. Living and studying in Valladolid helps one acquire the language at a very fast pace because one is surrounded by it every day. Our teachers are also very nice and helpful. They are usually in an amazing mood and they are beyond patient with us, which makes school and learning a bit more relaxed than usual. We also have tutors which we absolutely love! The tutors are within our age group and after our daily tutoring session they take us around and show us the ins and outs of the city. They also introduce us to their own friends which makes the experience so much better! It helps us meet people and make lifelong friends.

Kesley Isaza. IUP, Indiana University of Pennsylvania

” When I finally decided to make the courageous decision to travel to Spain, I also decided that my main objective would be summed up in three words stated by Mark Twain: Explore. Dream. Discover.  I desired to explore a culture different than my own, make dreams a reality, and discover more about myself as a person. … because I was completely immersed in a new and different culture, I began to gain a world perspective that I had never really considered before. … All in all, the exposure to a culture completely changed my view of the world, whether I was sitting in a classroom or personally interacting with the various aspects of Spanish culture…. Although I now feel more cultured and more intelligent because of my time spent in Spain, it is my emotional and personal growth that is a result of this trip that I appreciate the most… Finally, and most significantly, I am blessed with precious and wonderful memories of Valladolid that will continue to shape who I am.”

Katelyn Sondereker, Junior, Biology (Pre-Med) Major, Spanish & Chemistry Minor

The campus at the University of Valladolid is very nice and fairly modern.  I absolutely love the city of Valladolid.  When I first heard about the program, I honestly thought that I would be travelling to a small town in the middle of nowhere.  Valladolid is small city, comparable to Pittsburgh.  There is also a lot to do.  There are countless places to shop, parks to visit, museums, historical sites, and the night life is amazing.  Everyone goes out on the weekends and it so much fun, there are so many different places to see and people to meet.

Jennifer Yasechko. IUP

” I have always been determined to learn Spanish, but after needing it to communicate I noticed as I developed an even stronger desire to study and absorb the language… I noticed my confidence in speaking Spanish improve each day, along with my cultural awareness.  This trip really helped me change the way I had perceived the world and built me into a stronger, more knowledgeable, worldly person. “

Rachel Mikolay, Sophomore, Biology & Speech Lang Pathology Major, Spanish Minor

The housing experience in Spain is the best! You get to live with a Spanish family and learn so much about the language, the city, and Spanish life. You have the opportunity to really get involved in the community and make strong relationships with your host parents. All of the homes are close to the university and close to the Plaza Mayor and bars as well! The food is delicious! Your host mom cooks fresh food right from the market and every meal you get fresh bread and sometimes wine! I would say that living with a host family is one of the most beneficial parts of the program.

Casey Ryan. IUP. Housing and Host Families in Valladolid

“Before this trip my world seemed small and school was the center of everything I knew. I still value education but have learned that the people with whom you share your experiences are the true gifts in any situation…Without this program my first year here at the University of Akron would not have been the same and probably would not have meant as much to me; this has redefined my year at Akron. Thank you for this month abroad!

Lisa Mickley, Freshman, Biology (Pre-Med) Majo. Spanish Minor

There are many benefits that come from the Valladolid program, and one of the advantages is definitely the excursions.  During the course of the semester there are five excursions included in the program that show you different parts of Spain.  These trips allow you to encounter other aspects of the Spanish culture that you typically would not have the chance to experience.  For example, we have already gone to Segovia, Salamanca and there are more to attend in the future.  Also, some of our professors join us on these trips, which is very helpful.  They take us through the cities and explain different buildings, artwork, and anything else we might be interested in.

Courtney Smith. IUP, Spring Program

” More importantly on an academic level, taking Spanish classes at a Spanish university was unbelievably practical and useful. It taught me so many finer details and intricacies about the language, not to mention practical applications and idiomatic phrases… There is nothing quite like the feeling of successfully communicating with someone in another language. It is quite an experience, especially when you understand the entirety of what they are saying to you and you are able to formulate an educated response back…However, this trip also made me see that at times, no language is necessary to understand. “

Daniel Slattery, Junior, Mechanical Engineering Major, Spanish Minor

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