Enthralled by Edinburgh (to say the least)!!!
Submitted by Shelby Sage Lisieski - - | September 20, 2017
WOW, where do I even start!?!? Well, I would like to start off by saying that Edinburgh is such an underrated city. Before studying in this marvelous city, I had never heard of it...MY LOSS! You hear about places such as London and Belfast, however, to me, I believe Edinburgh is the most enchanting. Every cobblestoned street, corner, and close (alleyway) has its own personality. Each with unique bakeries, pubs, restaurants and possibly a man in a flow kilt playing the bagpipes if ya get really lucky! (Kilts are really more attractive than you think).
Right off the bat, I made an amazing group of friends who went to my university. We were a big ol' group calling ourselves the Dingo Squad! When stepping foot into the infamous Flat 1, you would enter a room filled with accents varying from English, Dutch, Chinese, Spanish, Russian and so much more. Most of the time the conversation was based around "roasting me"(out of love of course) and my sheep socks. On nights out we spent most of our time at our favorite pub, Finnegan's Wake, atop of Victoria Street! They have live music every single day of the week so it gave us an excuse to get down with our bad self and sing 80's rock songs (horribly might I add). However, beyond Finnie's, there was never a lack of amazing pubs or activities to do! Other than my group of friends, I had the best flatmates i could have ever dreamed of. We always jokes about how we were living a reality show life together as we gathered around the window to see what was happening at muscle beach that day!
On the studious aspect of my time spent, I loved Edinburgh Napier University. The classes I took were very interesting...especially wine studies! Grading was a bit different and sometimes kind of confusing, but I figured it out after a wee bit. There was also so many clubs that you could join during the first week during the freshers fair! Also, my site director, Jeanna, was an absolute angel! She was always there when I needed her and was so full of love! She brought us to a traditional Scottish ceilidh and let me tell you, my calves have never been so sore and I have never been so sweaty! Dancing truly is hard!!! Also, kilts really are more attractive than you think!
Anyway, the city itself stole my heart. Each time I would travel away, even just for a short weekend, it was so great to get back HOME. We would fly over the Forth Bridge and as I looked out the window I couldn't help but smile. The pilot would then come over the intercom and say "Ladies and gentlemen, we are making our final approach into Edinburgh Airport. Welcome and enjoy your stay in Scotland!", along with the local time and the temperature (which was usually something chilly where a scarf was needed). Whenever the pilot would recite that line though, my stomach would drop and automatically fill with butterflies.
About 8 months after my study abroad experience I returned back to Edinburgh to visit. I was nervous it would be different, luckily for me, it felt just as much like home as it did 8 months prior. I hope to someday spend more time back in the place I have grown to love so much. Thank you so much, Edinburgh for making me realize so much...especially my love for sheep!!!
Last but not least, I would like to share one of my favorite memories from my time abroad (right next to my weekend getaway up to the Highlands). The very last night before I departed back to the states, a few of us went to dinner then tried our best to catch the sunset. As we ran to the top of Calton Hill (totally out of breath), we turned around to be amazed by the sight of contrasting colors painted across the sky. As we gazed out over the city, the castle sitting strong in the dead center *que Castle on the Hill by Ed Sheeran*, I couldn't help but reminisce on the past 3 1/2 months and count my blessings and know that "everything happens for a reason". We all then came together and hugged it out. CLICHE I KNOW!
Thank you, Edinburgh for making me feel complete in so many ways. A huge chunk of my heart will forever wander throughout you (most likely going to Lidl 3 times a week to pick up Digestives and peanut butter). I can't wait to return already. 11/10 recommend this program!
HAPPY KILT CHECKING! ;)
p.s. make sure to try haggis with neeps and tatties! It's delicious!!! CHEERS!
Program: Semester in Edinburgh
The best decision I made in college
Submitted by Sasha - University of Massachusetts, Amherst | September 19, 2017
I always knew I wanted to go abroad. Being a hospitality and tourism management major, I knew I wanted experience working abroad. After doing a lot of research I found CISabroad. To say the least, it fit all my needs. Since I was going through the whole process alone (my home university was not very helpful), the people I spoke with were very responsive, personable and helpful. They made the few weeks leading up to my departure very comfortable to help ease the anxiety. From the moment I stepped off the plane in Barcelona, someone from the onsite staff was there to greet me. I knew I made the right choice.
With the wonderful communication I had with CISabroad from the beginning, they paired me perfectly with my internship. I was doing marketing for an award winning hostel chain. This not only opened my eyes to a part of the industry we do not talk about in school, but it was extremely hands on. To sum up my experience, anything I did as a tourist, I got to write blog posts about. Then I would hop on my boss' scooter with him and take pictures and videos of the city. I grew professionally from the experience but also personally. Photography is something I always wanted to get into and working here really helped me start doing so.
I loved every minute of my internship in Barcelona and the traveling I was able to do on the weekends. I would recommend this program to anyone looking for a unique experience.
Program: Intern in Barcelona
Tourism Major in Barcelona
Submitted by Emily Sullivan - Plymouth State University | September 18, 2017
I had the luck of interning abroad for 6 weeks from June-July with a great consulting agency in one of the greatest cities in Spain! I am a travel management major with a minor in business admin and was giving the opportunity to help design a travel catalog for a RV travel agency. Not having your average business degree made me feel a little nervous to go into the internship, but I learned so much over my time there and my co-workers and advisors were so welcoming and helpful. They loved a lot of my ideas and it was great to feel appreciated in the workplace. CIS offers weekend excursions (I went on almost everyone) that bring you to different regions all through out Catalonia so you do not miss out on anything! There were always plenty of activities to go out and meet other Americans interning abroad, I made to new best friends! Even when I was homesick the CIS staff was very attentive and genuinely cared for my well being and it made my experience all the better. They listened to what I wanted in an internship and found me the perfect match. Even my host family was in the BEST location of Barcelona (Gracia) and my host mom was such a great cook. CIS is a very accommodating and caring company that does whatever they need to find you your best spot out there!
Program: Intern in Barcelona
Submitted by Yasmeen Darwiche - The New School | September 12, 2017
My time in Barcelona was one for the books. This was my first time studying abroad and flying on an airplane by myself, and I felt very confident going through CIS abroad. They were very organized and they made me excited and ready upon arriving in Barcelona. The activities and the people made me very comfortable and I learned so much by just walking up La Rambla hearing Catalan and Spanish of the people around me.
Program: Summer in Barcelona
Intern in Cape Town
Submitted by Riley Jay - University of Kansas | September 12, 2017
I’ve been asked multiple times why I chose to go to Cape Town of all places for my experience abroad — I never truly had an answer, but after coming back from South Africa I would never have picked a different place to go! This country has SO much to offer: activities, food, culture, animals, nature, diversity, language, adventure, experience, etc. There wasn’t a single day that I didn’t do at least something while I was there. The housing was conveniently located and everyone in the program was within walking distance of each other. I walked into the program not knowing a single person, and walked out of the program with some of the most amazing friends. The onsite CIS team gave us an orientation on our first night, checked in with us often, and gave us a lovely farewell dinner to cap it all off! The application process was easy and CIS was helpful throughout. I recommend South Africa to anybody! If you’re even slightly considering, I’m telling you the answer is already yes!
Program: Intern in South Africa