Granada is a city that attracts a special kind of people. People here are looking to become immersed in culture, language, food, art, and so much more that this wonderful city has to offer. If you’ve been following my time here, then you’ve heard a little about what I’ve been doing. I figured the way to best paint this study abroad experience in full, however, is via the people who are living it with me. I interviewed five students about their time in Granada so far. Here is what they had to say.
What’s your favorite thing about Granada?
Andy: “It’s a decently-sized city but still small enough to still feel like a community. It’s super walkable, and there’s a lot of history.”
Jayden: “All the nature and activities.”
Jaclyn: “The size of the city—not too big but not too small, and there’s always things going on.”
Eliza: “The Sacramonte.” (If you don’t know, it’s a part of the city in the side of a mountain where people live in caves—highly recommend checking out)
What’s your least favorite thing?
Andy: “It’s a pain to travel outside Granada. Even getting to the bus station to take busses around southern Spain is difficult to get to.”
Jayden: “Personally, it’s how far my homestay is from the IES Abroad Center. I walk a half hour there and back more than once a day, which makes for a nice walk but it’s definitely a little draining.”
Jaclyn: “It’s very difficult to communicate with people because my Spanish isn’t that good.”
Why did you choose to study here?
Andy: “Because my older brother studied in Seville, but I didn’t have enough Spanish credits to study there so I ended up here.”
Jayden: “Because it accomplished some of my requirements for my major and had the trip to Morocco which I really wanted to go on.”
Jaclyn: “I wanted to work on my Spanish, and I chose Granada specifically because of the size of the city and because I’m a history minor and there’s so much history.”
Eliza: “I wanted to live with a host family and practice my Spanish and live somewhere where not everyone speaks English so they’d actually talk to me in Spanish.”
Are you happy you chose to study here?
Andy: “Definitely—when I travel outside the city and come back I’m always happy I chose to study here.”
Jayden: “Yes, it’s a blast, I’ve met some great people.”
Jaclyn: “Hell yeah, I’m having the most amazing time ever.”
Eliza: “Yes, very much so. It’s so beautiful and I’m having so much fun.”
How’s your Spanish?
Andy: “Not great, but it has definitely improved since being here. I’ve been able to communicate with people even if my grammar isn’t perfect, which is really cool.”
Jayden: “It’s improved slowly, but I don’t speak that much outside of class.”
Jaclyn: “Definitely a lot better than it was when I first came here, but still pretty bad.”
Eliza: “If I were to define it in governmental levels, I’d say ‘emerging conversational fluency.’”
What’s the funniest thing that’s happened to you since being here?
Andy: “Every day something funny happens, it’s hard to pinpoint just one. I’d say that it’s always funny struggling through a conversation in Spanish with a local when we’re both trying to communicate but neither of us really knows the other language.”
Jayden: “Dancing on stage at Mae West for a dance competition.”
Jaclyn: “Missing our flight back from London and crying in the airport.”
Eliza: “The first day my host mom after lunch told me to put my water cup in the sink, but the word for ‘sink’ sounds like the word they use for ‘fridge’ in Spain so I put my cup in the fridge. The next morning at breakfast we had a big laugh and bonded.”
About the students:
Andy Richardson: junior at University of North Carolina, studying Advertising
Jayden Danko: junior at Illinois Wesleyan
Jacyln Alvarado: junior at Redlands University, studying Communications
Eliza Stup: junior at Bowden University, studying Politics
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<p>I love to laugh and think that's sometimes the best medicine. I spent this past summer dissecting human brains in a lab and the summer before that being an over-night counselor for eighteen twelve-year-old girls. I love to produce music and foster dogs. I took psychophysics class my very first semester by mistake (the pre-requists were calculus and physics: neither of which I had taken so it's still unclear who let<br>me into that class) which was truly the hardest class of my life but I stayed in it the whole semester and worked harder than I ever previously had and wound up doing well - still proud of that one! There are a lot of parts to me, and I'm happy to keep figuring them all out!</p>