For many, summer is about adventure and letting go of all the stress from the previous year. And, for 28 students here at the University of Wisconsin – Whitewater, this meant heading off to Greece for a trip full of Greek history, culture, music, and food.
This trip, which was orchestrated by associate professor Dr. Kate Ksobiech and professor Susan Wildermuth, is part of a long line of annual foreign study trips taken by the communications department starting back in 2000.
Still, this specific trip was a long time in the making, and because of the extensive, jam-packed schedule, there was a lot of planning to do. According to Wildermuth, the planning took around a year and a half and included multiple stages.
“I do the research and create an itinerary,” said Wildermuth. “And then I work with the university and with various tour agencies to price it, refine it, and finalize the details.”
In the end, Wildermuth was able to refine everything down, to a day by day plan complete with trips to remote villages, famous landmarks and local restaurants full of ethnic foods for students to try.
On top of Wildermuth’s preparations, the students also had to do a bit of preparing themselves. The trip is the final part of a cross-cultural travel study program which, according to Ksobiech, entails taking a course where students learn about the heritage and culture of the country they’re traveling to prior to leaving for the trip.
And for students who completed the program, like recent UW-Whitewater graduate Katie Carey, the three weeks spent adventuring and creating close relationships was well worth the work.
“We spent three weeks just exploring the cities, trying all these new kinds of foods, hiking through the mountains, and spending lots of time in the sea,” said Carey. “Of course not everything was always perfect during our time there, but our group was so supportive and became so close, we all remembered to make the most out of our time together and in Greece. I honestly am still not convinced it was all just a dream.”
And now with the 2019 trip in the books, Wildermuth is looking forward to the future.
Just ahead is an extra special trip for program alumni to celebrate the twentieth anniversary of the first cross-cultural travel study trip and a campaign to create a scholarship to help ease the financial burden for future students who hope to create the same memories and bonds as the students before them.
For more information on how to participate in the next student and faculty adventure visit the Office of Global Experience or call (262)-472-5759.