Bologna, from Professor Doug Stuart
The weather has finally changed here in Bologna. August was dreadfully hot, and it was still uncomfortably hot when the students arrived at the end of that month. Now, after some heavy rains last week, the temperature has dropped by about ten degrees (celsius) and people are wearing sweaters. The students have completed two weeks of intensive Italian language, and seen some wonderful sights on our guided tours around town. We especially enjoyed our bus trip to the hills above Bologna, for pizza and some terrific views of the city. Carol and I have enjoyed bringing the students to our apartment for dinner - in groups of five or six every Wednesday evening. It has given us a chance to get to know them better and to introduce them to some Bolognese dishes. This coming weekend, the group heads for Siena and the Tuscan countryside. We can't wait.
Toulouse, from Professor Andy MacDonald
The students arrived at the Dickinson en France center in Toulouse on September 1st and have just completed two weeks of orientation classes and activities. Last week we had an excursion to visit the ruins of two nearby medieval castles associated with the crusades against the Cathars in the region surrounding Toulouse. The students just finished the last of several classes and urban walking visits to familiarize them with the history of Toulouse from the times when the city was a Roman settlement up to the Renaissance when the pastel trade made Toulouse a very wealthy place. Next week we will be heading to Paris to visit the Musée d'Orsay, the Centre Pompidou and to see a flamenco dance version of "Carmen" at the Chaillot theatre in the Trocadero, just across the Seine from the Eiffel Tower.
Some of our students will begin their university studies at the Institut d'Etudes Politiques and the Social Sciences section of the Toulouse university system next week. All the students are settling into life with their host families and improving their language skills and cultural knowledge. The weather is turning cooler and fall feels like it's just around the corner.
Norwich Science, from Professor Marcus Key
All went well in London with the History of Science course in full-swing. I have a small but great group of 9 science students with whom, over this past weekend, we moved our base of operations to Edinburgh, Scotland to focus on the Scottish Enlightenment and its manifestation in the Industrial Revolution. Most of the students' luggage has been transferred to Norwich in anticipation of our move to the University of East Anglia next week. After an on-site orientation in Norwich, the students will conclude their History of Science work and settle into classes at UEA.
Málaga, from Professor Mark Aldrich
All 22 students arrived on August 31st and enjoyed a few days of orientation before starting classes on Wednesday, September 3rd. They are getting to know Málaga, their host families, and are adjusting well to the Spanish only language commitment. We have made two day trips to familiarize students with Andalusian culture. On Saturday, September 6th we went to Ronda, in the northern part of the province of Málaga, during the city's annual 'fiestas'. It was a chilly and threatening rain most of the day, but the students enjoyed being a part of the festive atmosphere. On Monday, September 8th we went to Granada, where the focus was more historical. Students learned about the fall of Granada in 1492, visited the tomb of Ferdinand and Isabelle in the Royal chapel, and spent the afternoon visiting the Alhambra. Classes are in full gear now at our 'center' and students are in the process of choosing University of Málaga courses, which will be starting over the course of the next two weeks.
Moscow, from Irina
September brought very cold weather to Moscow. So Eric Souder, our academic year student, is keeping warm by visiting various museums and exhibits. He has already visited Tretyakov Gallary, The State Museum of Contemporary History of Russia, Lermontov Museum and Novodevichi Convent. Eric had a wonderful opportunity to attend a ceremony at Danilov Orthodox Monastery in commemoration of the return of the original bell collection from Harvard University. This collection was bought by an American businessman from the Soviet government in 1930s and was recently donated to Danilov Monastery.
Although technically there is only one student in the Dickinson-in-Moscow program this semester, there is a sensible group of Dickinson alumni and former participants of the program including (Cara Roney ('07), Erica Lally('08), Jonathan Calka and Rosalie Gant ('07) who all returned to Moscow for further study or work. We are all looking forward to many more events scheduled for this fall.
Beijing, from Professor Rae Yang
Fifteen students arrived and settled into their residence hall rooms and homestay families in Beijing during the week of September 8th. Due to the Olympics, classes at Peking University started two weeks later than usual. Thirteen students have moved in with Chinese families while others moved into the university international student dorm. All of the students celebrated the Chinese Moon Festival other the past weekend with Ms. Gao, the on-site coordinator. Classes are starting this week.