BRIDGEPORT, Conn. -- This summer, Housatonic Community College students will have an opportunity to experience Old World Europe, thanks to a one-of-a-kind immersion program, which utilizes technology to help them assimilate in a new culture.
Housatonic Community College announced its upcoming study abroad program will include destinations to Barcelona, France and Italy. The study abroad program, which begins June 2018, offers students a unique blend of classroom instruction combined with foreign travel.
Associate Professor of Spanish, Jamilet Ortiz, teaches a Humanities course at HCC, which is designed to give students cultural context before they travel. “Every week of class, we focus on a different aspect of culture,” said Ortiz. “Language, history, economics, points of historical interest, so that when students visit the actual places, they’re less like tourists and more engaged in what they’re experiencing.”
Students are required to keep a blog or journal with daily entries to reflect on their interactions with the local population and environments. Ortiz communicates with her students through a mobile app. She also maintains a Shutterfly account that enables her to ask questions to the students as well as share photos and information pertaining to their trip.
While visiting Greece last June, HCC students were tasked with interviewing cab drivers on topical subjects, each being shared and commented in real time through the group’s Shutterfly page. Ortiz hopes to incorporate similar tasks with her current students this upcoming summer.
The total cost of the 2018 study abroad course is $4,474, which covers tuition, round-trip airfare, hotels, food and entrances to attractions. Students also have the option of a customizable payment plan as well as financial aid. “It’s a fantastic opportunity that not a lot of students know about," said Ortiz. “It’s a great way to earn college credit doing something many people don’t get to do.”
For more information on HCC’s study abroad program, visit their website.