By Courtney Lucas
It’s spring semester and summer is just around the corner, and now is the time to start planning your summer of a lifetime. With Cuesta’s help, students have the opportunity to travel as well as gain college credit.
If you are currently taking a language class, this is a great opportunity for you to get “an outside view of your own country,” said French teacher Susan Lloyd, who lived abroad in her 20s and went to school in France.
Cuesta offers students many opportunities to travel abroad, but too many kids just don’t know about it, said Lloyd.
One program that German teacher Petra Clayton is a promoter of and a program that many students seem to like is Worldwide Opportunities on Organic Farms, USA (WWOOF USA). WWOOF USA is an opportunity for students to travel anywhere they want around the world.
What makes this program different from other programs is that it is based around organic farming. Students are working on organic farms in exchange for their room and board. Students can travel alone, or with a group of friends, for either just a few days or for months, traveling to multiple different countries.
Cuesta student Oliver Bojorquez is currently in France for four months working in a bakery to learn how to make authentic French bread.
“It’s a completely new experience for me, and French bread is recognized as some of the best bread around the world,” said Bojorquez.
This program is not just available to students who are enrolled in a language but for anyone who wants to learn a different language or culture.
“The best way to learn a language is to, as I like to say, be tossed into it,” said Bojorquez.
Although most travel abroad programs last for at least a month, Cuesta also offers a two week trip to Mexico through the Viva Study Abroad program, for students who have tighter schedules.
Dawn Feuerbuerg, the Spanish professor at Cuesta College, offers the only travel abroad program at Cuesta where the professor has personal relationships with each homestay you live with, chooses each excursion you go on, and travels every year with students.
The trip is offered to students this year from June 27-July 11 in Oaxaca, Mexico. It is It is a two week all-inclusive program that has been specifically designed to accommodate all ages and Spanish language abilities. You can also earn two units of college credit traveling to and around Oaxaca through Viva Study Abroad.
“It’s very appealing for community college students because it is offered to all ages. We have students who do have kids and this provides an opportunity for all community members to be able to participate,” said Feuerberg.
And here is a piece of advice for students who are planning on traveling abroad:
“Don’t be a tourist, be a traveler and really internalize your experiences… shut off your phone and enjoy it,” said Clayton.
For more information about the WWOOF program visit wwoofusa.org, and for more information about traveling to Oaxaca this summer please contact Dawn Feuerberg at the number and email below.