Island Dining

           The food was, in a word, excellent. For one, it was so much fresher than most American food. Cyprus is a small island, but it has a thriving agricultural sector and a climate perfect for growing potatoes, olives, tomatoes, and melons. So when you went to a restaurant or the supermarket, there was a good chance that the fruits and vegetables were grown locally. Like many Mediterranean cultures, there was also more of an emphasis on homemade dishes rather than the junk food drowning in preservatives that is ubiquitous on American street corners.

A Day in the Life

           I am a man of routine, and so it was important to me to arrange some semblance of order with my day-to-day schedule. I would wake up most mornings around 6:30 or 7:00 AM. This was pretty early, considering breakfast didn’t start for another couple of hours. However, I found it worked best for me to get an early start to the day. I can be a bit sluggish right after I wake up and wanted to make sure I could be fully present when we started with whatever activities we had planned.

Embrace the Unexpected

           So, you’ve decided to study abroad. Maybe you already have some familiarity with what you’ll be doing, but most likely you are in the same position I was: anticipating the travel without a firm idea of what to expect. You’re aware of some broad generalities. It’s going to be hot, or there’s going to be a lot of walking, or you won’t have access to the same comfort foods you’ve gotten used to relying on during those midterm crunch weeks. But it’s impossible to say what your trip will really be like. If you’re like me, that stresses you out a little bit. That’s okay!

Goals Influenced

This eye-opening global experience influenced my professional and personal goals. While I was in the United Kingdom, I had to opportunity to investigate a research topic and hear from many nursing professionals about their different duties. This inspired me to think about how I can enact change in healthcare in the US. In addition, I experienced a new culture by going to local pubs, visiting museums, and exploring cities.

Advice from a Program Alum

If you are thinking about studying on the Pitt Plus3 United Kingdom program, DO IT! You will make lifelong memories with your new friends while expanding your knowledge. I am going to share with you some advice about packing for the trip, getting the most out of your studies, and how to enjoy yourself while staying safe.

Eating Out in England

During my short two weeks studying abroad in England, we went to many brilliant restaurants as a class as well as having the opportunity to explore on our own. I have always been someone who loves to bond over a good meal which is why I loved to try new things on this trip. We mostly ate out every meal because we were staying in a hotel room without a refrigerator and were traveling to different cities some days.

How I've Changed

When I was younger, I lived in Switzerland for two years. Being in another country in such formative years really transformed my own identity and desires in life. I grew to appreciate European culture more and more. It had been a while since I spent a long time in Europe until this study abroad in Cyprus. Being immersed in the European lifestyle once more really reinforced that I want to live abroad. The culture surrounding meals that emphasizes quality time and bonding over great food really resonates with how I want to live.

Food, Food and More Food

One of my all-time favorite ways to experience a new culture is through food, so you can bet that I ate a lot of Cyprian meals. I always made an effort to go to local restaurants for meals rather than chains. A lot of Cyprian cuisine is determined by the resources available on the island. Despite being an island, Cyprian cuisine does not include a lot of seafood. The water surrounding Cyprus has a lot of invasive species that diminish the fish population. We still went to a fish tavern and despite hating seafood I made it a goal to try everything they served. I even ate a fisheye!

Daily Life in Cyprus

To start most of my days I would wake up on time (except for one day) yet still rush to get ready. Although I always wanted to go out for breakfast, our days started too early and I never had enough time, so I ate the hotel breakfast. Next, we would board the bus and head off to our adventures. We never really got enough sleep so we would take epic bus naps that really hit the spot. We usually had business meetings earlier in the day and cultural events later in the afternoon. We visited ports, pharmaceutical companies, concrete companies, and more ports.