The four Providence students that are studying abroad in Belfast for this semester have now been here for a little over a week and we are loving every minute! Although it took longer to arrive here then we thought (we missed a flight and had a layover in London Heathrow for five hours) we are now here and soaking up every minute! However, this gave the four of us a chance to bond with the three other students from other universities back in the USA that would be joining us in this experience.
Upon our arrival, we were met at the airport by an IFSA Butler representative who took us to our hotel accommodations for that night. The hotel was right in the middle of downtown Belfast so it was a prime location for us to explore the city the very first day we arrived! After a night of fighting off some jet lag, we toured downtown a little bit more before our IFSA representatives took us to Stranmillis University College where we are living and taking classes this semester.
We are living in a flat that accommodates eight students. However, we all have our own room and our own bathroom (even with walk-in showers!). Stran’s campus is absolutely beautiful and looks like a park with all of its open land. Here are a few pictures of us exploring the first few days:
Since we moved into Stranmillis on Thursday yet orientation did not start until the following Monday, we, along with the other international students, made the most of our days by exploring the city of Belfast! We visited Victoria’s Square, a sort of city center/outdoor mall, Culture Night, and even the Titanic Museum!
Once orientation started on Monday, we had meetings every day to get us accustomed to student life here at Stranmillis. However, there were plenty of fun activities to keep us entertained every day. To name just a few there was a Fresher’s Funk Party (like parties at McPhail’s!), an inflatable day, and multiple movie nights.
Classes start on Monday here for us! Our schedules are still getting finalized but we know that we will be teaching for one full day every week at a school here in Belfast!
We already have plans to travel to Dublin, London, and Germany so we will give you updates on that as well as classes as soon as we can!! Hopefully this gave you a taste of how much fun (or as they say here in Belfast ‘craic’) we are having here in Belfast so far!!
Michelle, Maggie, Colleen, and Kati
The four Providence students that are studying abroad in Belfast for this semester have now been here for a little... MORE
The Providence College students arrived in Florence on Monday August 26th, part of a larger group (101 students) attending university in Florence as part of the Fairfield in Florence program.
The students were greeted by the Fairfield Florence staff and spent the first night in a hotel as every one gathered from around the United States. Several orientation sessions (apartment living, safety, travel, classes at Florence University of the Arts) occurred on Tuesday and continued throughout the week readying the students for their semester. Some students signed up to learn about service opportunities, an Art History tour of Florence, Firenza Fiorentina Soccer game; all were eager to get to their apartments in Central Florence.
Our washing machine and refrigerator aren’t working; luckily they are being quickly replaced. Florence and Abroad, the housing agency that works with Fairfield to provide city apartments is very responsive.
A few photos from the Art History Tour of Central Florence
Olive Tree of Peace, 20th Anniversary of the Florence Bombing
Touch the wild boar sculpture and you will return to Florence.
On Sunday the group traveled by bus to Pisa, by way of Ikea. The stop at Ikea gave the students the opportunity to purchase a few things for their apartments. There was a bit of confusion reading the Italian “Students were looking for sheets, but ended up with duvet covers.” “Tablecloths were no where to be found”
Pisa, about an hour bus ride from Florence, has a long history of rivalry for ruling Tuscany. Lead by two guides we visited the bapistry, the Cathederal and the Leaning Tower.
Inside the Pisa bapistry.
And orientation week is a wrap.
One week in… orientation is over, and classes are just beginning. The Providence College students arrived in Florence on Monday... MORE