It’s a cold week in Copenhagen Denmark, and Ariel Bloomer ’12 is sitting in her bedroom on the second floor of her host family’s home. The view from her balcony window is stark and beautiful, but there’s no denying it’s cold – and thoughts of warmer climes quickly come to mind. The solution? Logging in to her new project – the Scripps College Off-Campus Study blog – and reading about what fellow Scrippsies are doing in Australia, Chile, or Kenya.
The creator and moderator of the blog, Ariel recruited a consortium of Scripps students currently stationed around the world to write about the day-to-day adventures those interested in off-campus study might enjoy reading. It’s quickly taken on a life of its own, with reports coming in from Australia, Germany, Spain, Scotland, Kenya, Chile, Italy, and Denmark.
“I thought it would be nice to have a central place on the Scripps College website where off-campus students could share their experiences with each other and the rest of the Scripps community,” says Ariel. “I invited all students participating in a spring 2011 program to contribute, and I think it’s wonderful people are writing from such diverse programs and experiences.”
Neva Barker, Director of the Off-Campus Study program, couldn’t be more pleased. “I think everyone will enjoy keeping up with our Scripps students,” she says. “I know I’m eager to read the next installments from students who have already posted, and I look forward to the others when they have time in their busy semesters to update us.”
Both Ariel and Neva believe the power sharing these journeys will educate prospective students about the off-campus experience. “When I was researching programs and locations, I found personal accounts the most helpful,” says Ariel. “Hearing honest, first-hand evaluations of the study-abroad experience really helped me to choose the right program (for me), and I wanted others to have easy access to that kind of information.
“I’m happy to share my experiences in Denmark and hope future students will find it helpful as they research program sites, classes, or housing options,” she adds. “I also hope it will help students preparing their own semester off-campus by giving them a better idea of what to expect. I love writing, photography and travel; this blog is a way for me to combine things I’m passionate about, and help students with important decisions ahead of them.”
Visit the blog at community.scrippscollege.edu/offcampus and learn more about the students that make up the program today!