No Regrets: Q&A with IES Abroad Barcelona Alum Andrew Brummer

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IES Abroad

Meet Andrew Brummer (Barcelona Liberal Arts & Business, Fall 2014), who documented his travels in Europe using a friend’s Go-Pro camera. After returning from abroad, Andrew compiled his footage and received more than 20,000 views on YouTube! He also earned himself a place as a finalist in the 2015 GoAbroad Innovation Awards’ Student Video category.

Read on to hear about Andrew’s best memories abroad then vote for his video, Head-banging Around Europe, by Wednesday, May 27th!

IES Abroad: Why did you choose to study abroad?
Andrew Brummer: I chose to study abroad because I knew that I was never going to have another opportunity like it. I'm sure I will return back to Europe sometime in the future, but having four months to explore a new continent that extensively was something I could not pass up on. I got to know Barcelona with a depth that you can't get just by taking a weeklong vacation there with your friends or family. I wanted to make sure I had enough time to accomplish as much as possible before returning home.

IES Abroad: What was your most memorable experience?
I think the most memorable experience for me was witnessing and learning about the movement for Catalonian independence. Living in a city that is going through such an important stage in its political history was incredibly exciting. I could see the movement manifest itself everywhere (on the streets, in the classroom, even at FC Barcelona matches), so much so that I almost felt like I was a part of it. Being able to engage with my surroundings on a much deeper level was an unforgettable experience.

IES Abroad: What advice would you give to future students about studying abroad?
A piece of advice I would give to students studying abroad would be to make sure they do all they can to establish a connection with the place they are studying. Find a favorite restaurant and go there often enough so that the waiters remember you, or learn to navigate the back streets instead of taking cabs everywhere. The city is your home for a whole semester, and when you come back years later you'll want to have something meaningful to return to.

IES Abroad: Your film, Head-banging Around Europe, has more than 20,000 views on YouTube and is a finalist in the GoAbroad Innovation Awards. What suggestions do you have for students aiming to document their study abroad experience?
In terms of documenting your experience, I think there are countless ways to do it. I chose to make a video like that because for me each clip represented a hundred pictures that I could have taken on my iPhone. I felt like I was able to better capture my enthusiasm for the experience that way than any other. As long as you have something you are proud of at the end of the four months, you've done a good job.

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Remember to vote for Andrew’s video now!


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