Kaylee Brown had the opportunity to travel to Austria and Slovenia in the summer of 2018 to compare how healthcare systems in Europe were different to those in America. She stayed in the incredibly beautiful city of Graz. She was able to meet incredible students, teachers, doctors, healthcare providers, and various other individuals who provided her a slight insight into a different style of living. With her program, she was allowed to travel to various facilities and see all of the incredible work they were providing to individuals who truly needed care, regardless of ethnicity, a refugee, or not having insurance. In the classroom, she learned the history of Austria from its darkest times to its most inventive, while also being able to see the monuments and historical buildings with her own eyes in Vienna and Salzburg. To finish her experience, the program embarked on its first year including a week in Maribor, Slovenia. Here she was able to talk to further healthcare providers and nurses about their processes of schooling and how they differed from Austria. In the classroom she heard incredible stories, from individuals who volunteer to risk their life to rescue others trapped on mountains, to an interesting discussion of why people eat dirt. She also embarked on various excursions, seeing the breathtaking views of Bled Lake, to holding a baby bunny at an incredible retirement home, to learning the geography on top of the highest mountain overlooking Maribor. Her first journey abroad will not be her last, but it will forever be memorable.
CEE Title: Stop the Peanut Butter and Jelly
Our CEE, “Stop the Peanut Butter and Jelly”, reflected on various types of stereotypes associated with our countries. To begin, we asked the individuals who attended to make a sandwich at the peanut butter and jelly bar as they came in, or try a sandwich we made found in our country. As the presentation began, we explained who Vira Heinz was then introduced ourselves and explained our study abroad experience. The next section of our presentation required the participation of the audience on what they initially think when they hear PB&J sandwiches and what they put on their own sandwiches. Next, we explained that typically when one hears a PB&J sandwich they think of white/wheat bread with peanut butter and strawberry/grape jelly. However, we wanted to explain there are plenty of ways you can make a sandwich, just as there are plenty of ways to look at a controversial topic. We each then spoke about stereotypes and how our study abroad country viewed these topics compared to America. My topic was focused on raising taxes and the returns/benefits of taxation, another member focused on Islam, and lastly our final member discussed sexuality and acceptance. I felt over all it was very successful. The audience participated well and I could see by the reactions on their faces, they started to look at things differently. We took three topics from different global locations and brought them to our community to begin to think differently about.