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Brenley Bruxvoort

International Affairs

University of Northern Colorado
Studied Abroad at SIS
Brenley is an International Affairs major from the University of Northern Colorado, and studied abroad at SIS in Summer 2021.

If you were to sum up your Barcelona experience in one to two words, what would you say? My Barcelona Experience is…

My Barcelona Experience is ABSOLUTELY UNREAL!

Explain why you chose those words.

Every day at in my classes I felt like I was making real progress and learning new and important things. My professors were all great, and I loved meeting my classmates who came from all over the world. Additionally, Barcelona is a beautiful city that could be explored forever. I would be walking a different way home from wherever I was and accidentally stumble onto ancient ruins, a massive cathedral, or the beach. It was amazing!

What was your favorite place to eat in Barcelona? Favorite food?

My favorite places to eat were the small restaurants scattered around the smaller streets. My favorite foods were the paella (obviously), the churros and chocolate, and patatas bravas. But, every meal I had was delicious! My host mom also made very good tortilla de patatas!

What was your favorite tour, day trip, or cultural activity? Why?

My favorite day trip was to the ruins and beach in Tarragona. The ruins are spread over a pretty large area, and the tour ended at the cathedral towards the inside of the city. There’s also an amphitheater by the ocean, which is super neat. Then, after walking in the hot weather for a while, we headed to one of the most beautiful beaches I have ever seen to cool down. Our group was small, only 6 people, which was nice for meeting and hanging out.

What was your housing experience like? Did you live in an apartment with other students? A homestay with a local family? A residence hall on your Barcelona campus?

I stayed in a homestay with a local woman and my friend who I came to Barcelona with. I absolutely recommend doing a homestay. I was able to learn Spanish at home as well as in school, which proved to be very beneficial in my class. Our host mom also did our laundry, fed us every meal, helped us get to the train station when we needed it, and was a great person to ask whenever we had questions not only about day to day plans, but also about the history of Barcelona and Catalonia.

Is there a site in Barcelona that you would recommend to future students that may be a little more “off the beaten path”?

The Bunkers in Barcelona are a little bit out of the way, and a long hike up, but they are a must see in Barcelona. You are able to get a 360 view of the entire city from a very high point. The taller buildings, like the Sagrada Familia, big hotels and catherdrals are visible, sticking above all the other buildings. We packed a picnic and went up to watch the sunset, but ended up staying for much longer than we anticipated because it was so cool!

Why was Barcelona SAE the right program for you?

Barcelona SAE was the right program for me because it provided me with everything I needed to be successful in my first study abroad program. My host mom provided me with breakfast and dinner daily, as well as lunch when I asked for it. My classes were challenging, but not impossible, and the new friends and memories I have made while being here will be ones I never forget! At no point did I feel unsafe or unprepared for anything, and Barcelona SAE does a good job of provided resources for any and every situation.