Katie Thurbon is a senior international studies and economics major from Topeka. She has served as a staff writer for the Baker Orange since 2011. In addition to working on the paper, Thurbon is also a member of the track and field team, where she has gained All-American status in the pole vault four times. Thurbon was also named Baker's first Capital One Academic All American. In the fall of 2013, Thurbon will be blogging for the Orange while studying abroad in Granada, Spain.
An important part of any study abroad experience is just that, the experience. Once that country becomes a temporary home to you, it’s time to delve into the culture and live like a local. But what happens if you do not like or agree with part of the culture you are partaking in?
We turned our backs on Rabat to begin the journey to a small village in the Rif Mountains where we would be having lunch with a village family.
The Morocco Exchange program provided many opportunities to speak with Moroccans our age, giving us the chance to correct much of our false information about Islam. They spoke with knowledge on most current events and of the intricacies of their government. I know for a fact most Americans can’t do that. I came away with more knowledge and respect for the Moroccan people and for Islam in general.
The four-day Morocco excursion was an advertised part of the program that I chose to come to Spain. Therefore, I have known I would be going to Morocco for many months but nothing could have prepared me for what I encountered.
Despite the idealized treatment they receive from Hollywood, most iconic places are supremely real and thus not exempt from economic, political or social crises.
I had a personal triumph today. After only being here a week, I have already mastered navigating the sidewalks. Now I know this doesn’t sound too impressive but let me tell you a little about how the streets work here.
I came here with Central College Abroad. There are a total of 25 American students here with this program (only five of whom are men) and I chose it primarily because they place all of their students in Spanish homestays. This sounded like a great way to get to know more of the Spanish culture firsthand and, of course, to get free meals.
Senior Katie Thurbon applies the lesson she learned while listening to Bill Clinton speak last spring to her study abroad experience.
Kelly Burns, coordinator of student affairs, is the students' go-to resource for housing and meal plan questions.
For all technical difficulties, students will be referred to Helpdesk Supervisor Dee Schneck.