This past summer I participated in the study abroad program titled, “Discovering Montreal.” It was amazing! Throughout our one week stay, five other students, Dr. Birberick, and I traveled the city of Montreal, Quebec and learned about the history of how the city evolved as well as current issues the city of Montreal and country of Canada face. We saw the vast amount of architecture and cultural components such as the French-Canadian population, Hasidic Jewish population, and strong Roman Catholic influence. We heard many natives French speakers and ate delicious food, some from “boulangerie” (bakery) style restaurants, as well as Middle Eastern and Italian restaurants. We stayed in a dorm not too far from the main street of, “Côte-des-Neiges,” (snowy street) also the name of the neighborhood of which the street was on. We experienced a city where the native language is French and everyone knows French, while only most know English. I had never experienced being somewhere English was not the dominant language and it was a complete culture shock. It reminded me of the diversity present in the world and inspired me to learn other languages!
Some of the highlights of the trip included seeing the many artistic parts of the Metro station. The Metro is a typical city mass transportation system via subway. There is a huge difference between the average city and Montreal’s metro system, and that is ART! there is a lot of color and different types of artwork featured, from paintings to mosaics, and everything in between. Another highlight was going to the “Moment Factory” multimedia company. They have created superbowl shows and innovative tools for kids in hospitals, among many others. Their main goal is to bring people together out of their homes into fun experiences through art. This trip was fun and not only taught me a lot about other parts of the world; it gave me the urge to want to go abroad again! If you have the opportunity to study abroad, you should do it!
I am looking forward to participating in more opportunities through the capstone project (the honors program upperclassman project), as this will be a large undertaking and fun research opportunity. This capstone project, focusing on rape disclosure and predictors of positive and negative reactions, is going to help me focus on research skills and independent thought and critical thinking, both of which will be very helpful as I prepare to apply for human resource jobs post graduation, and eventually graduate school for marriage and family therapy. The project will help me formulate ideas, I will be learning how to research and write about subject matter applicable to the real world and disclosures many individuals face.
I have attached photos from my study abroad experience. Enjoy!!