Summer Study Program in Spain

By: Josh Fox

Are you interested in spending your summer in Europe? Want to learn more about a foreign culture at an affordable cost? If so, the Western Connecticut State University (WCSU) Summer Study Program in Spain is perfect for you.

Running from mid-May to mid-June, the WCSU Summer Study Program in Spain allows for students to spend a summer attending class in Malaga, Spain at the cost of only $4,300 – an estimated thousand dollars less than other schools’ programs.

The program is open to all WCSU students, and not only can it be used to fulfill the Intercultural Competency/Foreign Language requirement, but all classes taken can count for electives or major/minor requirements in Spanish. In addition to education, the program also gives students opportunities to travel to the cities of Madrid and Marbella and learn how to dance the flamenco and cook Spanish food like paella and tapas.

“The strength of the program is not only in its linguistic immersion, but also in its cultural immersion,” said Dr. Galina Bakhtiarova of the World Languages and Literature department, founder of the WCSU Summer Study Program in Spain. “Students live with Spanish families who provide room and board. That allows students to be part of the community. We’re not tourists, we’re part of the community.”

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The WCSU Summer Study Program in Spain was founded ten years ago by Dr. Bakhtiarova under the belief that studying abroad is a necessity, and she has made it her mission to work with each student to help them fulfill and enhance their academic goals.

If you’re interested in applying to the program, go online to wcsu.edu/spain and fill out the application. All applications are due by February 15th. If you have any questions, please contact Dr. Bakhtiarova at  bakhtiarg@wcsu.edu or in her office, Berkshire Hall 215D.

Study-abroad program going to Malaga and Morocco this summer

Jordan A. Sprogis | Editor-in-Chief

For the 10th anniversary of the summer study-abroad program in Spain, Western is going to Malaga and Morocco from May 18 to June 19.

Art professor David Skora will also be attending this year, so as part of the program, there will be historically art-based lessons and tours, including a visit to the Museo of Picasso in Malaga.

This also gives the opportunity to give students six CSU credits that will help fulfill their applied arts requirement, along with the standard six towards foreign language.

The program includes day trips to Granada, Seville and Cordova – cities rich with arts, culture, language and architectural beauty.

During those three weeks, students will immerse themselves in Spanish and Art classes at The Picasso Museum and Birthplace, The Centre for Contemporary Art and the Pompidou Museum, among other magnificent sights in the city.

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Photo courtesy of Dr. Bahktiarova

“It is complete, central immersion,” says Dr. Bakhtiarova. “You are not a tourist; you live the life of people in the area.”

For the last week, students will travel north of Africa in Morocco while exploring cities such as Tangier, Marrakech, Fez, Casablanca and more.

“This program is about living in and understanding another culture, which will help participants to understand their own culture,” she says. “We will explore in depth the hybrid nature of European culture and the mutual influences between the Christian, Islamic and Judaic cultures.”

An estimated travel fee for the program is $4300, including round-trip airfare from the New York/New Jersey metropolitan area, transportation to and from the U.S. airport, double-occupancy apartment accommodations in Spain, emergency health insurance, airport transfers in Spain, and tours to Granada, Cordoba and Seville.

The package also helps cover some meals and a seven-day bus tour during the Morocco portion of the program. Students can apply by filling out this form by the deadline on Feb. 12 with the non-refundable $1,300 deposit.

For more information, click here or contact Dr. Bakhtiarova at bakhtiarg@wcsu.edu. Her office hours are Tuesdays from 12:30 to 3:30 p.m. and Mondays and Wednesdays from 12:15 to 1:15 p.m. in Berkshire 215D. You can also make an appointment if you have more questions about the program since there will not be any more public information forums.