Tellus: (tel’us), n. 1. [Latin] earth, soil, and the land; a country; the world. 2. a collection of Willamette University student’s insights, stories, photos and thoughts from their experiences studying abroad.

Archive for October, 2009

Returning from Abroad – Host Family Experiences in Connemara »

This is not a particularly striking photo, I know, but the memories that this photo invokes for me are striking. In late January 2009, along with sixteen other Willamette students who were also spending the semester in Ireland, I spent four days in Connemara, Ireland, which is a gaeltact, or Irish gaelic-speaking region. We were […]

Roadtripping. »

Free College: is it like Communism? »

I arrived in Ireland not really knowing what to expect other than the stereotypical (although incredibly picturesque) rolling green hills, sheep, stone walls, and the friendly, if a bit wild, Irish. After arriving there and learning more about the culture from more of an insider’s perspective I found out something that really stood out to […]

Leaves on the breeze »

I returned from Keele at the beginning of the summer, approximately 14 weeks ago. Though obviously my time abroad changed me greatly, I now struggle to remember a huge percentage of the day to day happenings that characterised my study abroad experience, and despite the apparent distress of losing large portions of my experience from […]

City of Memory »

Prague is a city which celebrates the harmonious interaction between history and the present. Living in Prague opens your eyes to the importance of the past in defining a nation’s culture and identity. The city’s architecture and memorials not only honor the country’s predecessors and heroes but commemorate the beginning of the nation. The Charles […]

Transitions in time and space »

Taken on Keele University campus in late January, this picture reminds me strongly of my time abroad. Old brick and more modern construction existed side by side, creating a mosaic which showed the history of the university. I walked through this arch almost every day, and each time was reminded of the transition I had […]

Latvia Encapsulated in Icefishing »

Rīga is bitterly cold in the winter. It was -18° Celsius (just under 0° Fahrenheit) in late January when I got off the plane in Latvia and walked across the tarmac to the gate, still wearing the jeans and T-shirt I had on when I left Seattle. The next three weeks only got colder. On […]

A Real, Live Ibis »

Home Away from Home »

“So, are you a man or a woman, like?” »

Spending a semester abroad affects people in many different ways; it can make the timid more assertive, the bashful more forthright, the obnoxious more respectful, the vain more humble, etc. I feel that it draws out the finer qualities in an individual as they overcome language barriers, time differences, social conventions, and culture shock. While […]

An Evening in Valparaiso, Chile »

I took this picture as a part of my extracurricular photography class with Chilean students. It was a class of about 15 students and there was only one other person from the U.S. taking the course. My Professor can be described as an aristic hippie with a dark sense of humor. He took us to […]

Where Am I?! »

‘Legendary’ »

The City that Changed Everything »

Vienna was not what I was expecting. Although, in hindsight, I don’t know what I was expecting. I knew it would be different and adventurous, but I never expected to come out on the other end of study abroad feeling the way I do now. If there is one piece of advice I could give […]

Why Go Abroad? »

I’ve wanted to study abroad in France since I was about 14 years old. I started learning French my freshman year of high school, and continued through high school and college. One of the main reasons that I came to Willamette is because I knew that they had such a great study abroad program and […]

Encountering History. »

In London, History greets you at every turn. Literally. There are monumental locations galore: Westminster Abbey, in which a myriad of historical figures are buried; the Banqueting House, at which Charles I was beheaded; the British Library, housing manuscripts written by Dickens, Milton, Darwin, and Handel; Churchill’s Cabinet War Rooms; the Tower of London, where […]

Empty Pews »

The Doldrums »

I studied abroad in Valparaíso, Chile for 5 months. My experience was a sequence of completely unexpected events. Ups and downs are givens when it comes to a new cultural experience, but I didn’t realize what shape they would take in my time abroad. This entry, titled “The Doldrums,” I wrote as song lyrics around the halfway point of my stay. I chose to submit these lyrics because they really sum up just about everything I was feeling at the time; home sickness, frustration, curiosity, and helplessness.

LegenDerry »