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An Unforgettable Month in Vienna, Austria – Kefei Wu

As a part 2/summary of my summer study abroad experience, I would like to discuss more about the program itself.

On May 18th, I arrived at Vienna International Airport, marking the opening of my study abroad program. As a rising sophomore, I was worrying whether I could manage my time well. The program was PS 394: Crisis Diplomacy. It required a lot of reading and background knowledge of European history. Every day after my arrival in Vienna, I needed to read at least 40 pages of a scholarly book called Crisis Diplomacy. During the first week, I was busy adjusting myself in order to enjoy the trip while studying for the course. Traveling around churches, castles, and bridges sometimes made me feel a sense of fear, because there were so many things that I didn’t know. During the first weekend, I went to Italy. The weather was cold, and the bridge of sigh was depressing. Italy’s beauty was cover by a veil because of the rain.

However, things became a little bit different. As I read more of the books and visited more museums, I gradually found myself not so strange in the environment. I could recognize a few sculptures and tell stories about them. I could analyze the reasons why wars happened. When I was in Verona, I saw a statue of Cavour, the brilliant politician who stimulated the unification of Italy. When I was in Schonbrunn Palace, I could feel Franz Josef’s ambition, courage, and concern. Surprisingly, as I managed my time well, studying while touring could be an amazing experience, both broadening my horizon and enforcing what I learned in class.

I can’t say the course was easy, but I can honestly say it is worth taking. Thanks to the professor and TA, I learned so many things that I never expected to learn in a short month. Also, I couldn’t believe I traveled 4 countries in one month. As the program already ended for a month, all the memories still remain in my mind. Good moments never fade away.

Here are some pictures that I found remarkable and memorable.

IMG_8493 IMG_8529 IMG_8651 IMG_8990 IMG_9031 IMG_9304 IMG_9350

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