FaceBook  Twitter

This past semester I had the opportunity to study abroad in Barcelona, Spain with some of my closest Beta Sig pledge brothers.

While the experience overseas usually has a positive influence on students, my takeaways exceeded expectations.  Living in a city where nobody speaks English opened my eyes to a new way of living.  Coming from New York City, things are entirely different in Spain.  For starters, the pace of living was far slower.  From walking down the street to dinner with friends, the culture emphasized family and friendship opposed to simply getting things done. 

I was lucky to be going away with my brothers who I felt so close to.  After four months, over a dozen cities and a lot of interesting situations later, I can honestly say that my relationship with each of these Beta Sig Brothers has increased tenfold.

The language barrier was one of the most difficult situations we encountered.  But with a little help from Jake Minkoff’s Spanish skills and some trial and error, we were able to navigate a city and make it our own.

The city of Barcelona was magnificent.  The sights were beautiful and the architecture seemed out of a movie.  We took full advantage of our early classes and Fridays off by exploring attractions such as Park Guell and the Sagrada Famillia.  As the weather improved we spent afternoons on the beach, lounging and playing volleyball.  In the evening we explored Barcelona’s highly regarded night life – it didn’t disappoint.

Traveling on the weekends with the guys was an incredible opportunity.  As a group we traveled through Europe, venturing from Istanbul, Turkey, to Dublin, Ireland, and more in between.  We experienced different cultures and saw how people interacted.  My main takeaway – in a world that seems incredibly diverse, with a mix of so many different religions and ideologies – was that people are people.  It was great to be able to walk into a new city and feel welcomed, even when locals couldn’t speak the same language as us.

We left each city with an incredible story. Whether it be our long expedition to the “Cliffs of Moher” in Ireland, or our cliff jumping in Paradise Valley, Morocco. 

I’d like to thank each one of my Barcelona Beta Sig Brothers, Collin Branch, Alec Bogholtz, Jake Minkoff, Aaron Portner, Matt Stern, Tyler Berlinsky, and Tommy Donovan for helping make this experience so incredible.

Also, Marc Raiman and Jake Covell studied abroad in Prague, Czech Republic, and Ross Oringer studied in Florence, Italy.

It was a life changing experience and if given the opportunity to do it again, I would do it the exact same way; in a random city with some awesome Beta Sig friends!