Final Reflections

As the trip has come to an end and we are back in the United States, I find myself reflecting on the past 3 1/2 weeks, and how it went by so fast. I could not have asked for a better first experience abroad with an amazing group of individuals. Reflecting back on the academic side of the trip, I return home much more knowledgeable about various different topics that involve the country of Poland.

One of our main focuses of the trip surrounded the Holocaust, why it happened, and the different political issues that follow it today. We read various different articles and books  for both psychology and political science that helped us understand these things. We also visited three different Nazi German camps and travelled to different cities to see the sites of Jewish pogroms. Also, we learned about different minority groups located in Poland such as the Tatars and Orthodox Christians. Finally, we ended on the issue of abortion in Poland and how it is illegal except in certain cases within Poland and how the Catholic Church may play a role in shaping these political values. Not only did we spend our time in classrooms, we also went out and about in many different cities from south to north in Poland visiting places that helped us to better understand the country.

We got to try many different kinds of foods and eat ice cream almost every night which was personally my favorite part of the meal. The beautiful architecture and how presentable every little business, house, and store were was definitely something to see. While we had very eventful days everyday and met wonderful people, my favorite day was touring the Presidential Palace and meeting with a Righteous Among the Nations, Irena Senderska-Rzonca. Overall this was the trip of a lifetime and I hope to bring the Polish culture home and explain to my family and friends how great this trip was and why certain things are happening in Poland today. I would like to end this blog post by extending a thank you to Dr. Wright and Dr. Anes for leading a wonderful field studies trip.

-Gabi Hancock

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