Hannah Lehmann, a junior Criminal Justice Sciences (CJS) major at Illinois State University, absorbed the full Scotland experience through a study abroad program. Lehmann is from Waukesha, WI and chose Scotland, United Kingdom to explore the hidden treasures within the country. Below she answers a series of questions and shares her incredible experience studying abroad!
Q: Where did your desire to Go Global come from?
Lehmann: Traveling is always something I have wanted to do but never really knew how to get started on my own. When I found out that there was an opportunity within my department that cost less than my typical semester at ISU I knew there was no better time to start my new adventure. While I was applying to go to Scotland I was hired to spend my summer in Hawaii! I worked on the North Shore of Oahu at Camp Erdman and served as a cabin counselor. During my summer break, I was able to travel to multiple other Hawaiian Islands and learn about Polynesian Culture, which is not something you hear much about on the mainland. About two weeks after this adventure ended, I was off to spend my entire semester in the United Kingdom (which was very different from Hawaii in many ways).
Q: What country did you go to, and why did you choose that country?
Lehmann: Scotland! I chose Scotland because of the hidden treasures within the country, like the highland cows and all the lochs. I am also a criminal justice major, so I could apply my study abroad credits to my CJS electives.
Q: What university did you attend?
Lehmann: Glasgow Caledonian University (GCU).
Q: What classes did you take?
Lehmann: Theories of Crime and Punishment, Sociology of Deviance, and Gender and Society.
Q: Which was your favorite class and why? What did you learn?
Lehmann: My favorite module was Sociology of Deviance because it took a look at how things in our everyday life may be viewed as deviant depending on who and where you are. It examines what deviance really means and how this definition is viewed globally.
Q: Were the classes you took abroad different from classes you’ve taken at ISU or another U.S. college/university? If so, how?
Lehmann: Classes are very different at Glasgow Caledonian. When it comes to assessment methods at GCU, each course only has two projects that are submitted and they make up your entire grade. Most were weighted 50/50, except for Gender and Society which was 40/60. Classes are structured in a lecture and seminar format, which meant that lectures were a place to take notes with everyone in the course, and seminars were subgroups of the course (10-15 people) who met to discuss the readings and what was covered in lecture. There were never any assignments or quizzes, just recommended readings for the week.
Q: What places did you visit?
Lehmann: While I was there I did a lot of traveling around Scotland with the university. We visited Alnwik Castle (featured in the Harry Potter films), Inverness, Loch Ness, the Highlands, Pitlochary’s Enchanted Forest, Edinburgh, Stirling, St. Andrews, and so much more! I also took advantage of the extremely low airfare offered in Europe and visited London, Dublin, Paris, and Amsterdam.
Q: What was your favorite place, and why?
Lehmann: My favorite place I visited while abroad was Amsterdam! I have always been fascinated by their culture and history so to finally see it in person was beyond exciting. While I was there we stopped at the Anne Frank House, Floating Tulip Market, Red Light District, and many canals. The city is extremely walkable and everywhere you went there is a little shop selling you stroopwafels and frite cones!
Summarize your overall experience.
Lehmann: While studying abroad I met people from all around the world and made friendships that will last a lifetime. Within my building, I had people from Bulgaria, Netherlands, Germany, France, Cyprus, and Iceland, so not only was I learning about the UK and the wonderful city of Glasgow, but I got to know new languages and cultures from all around the world. Glasgow was a city I had never heard of until I decided I would be studying abroad and it is awesome! The campus is located right on the style mile, which is exactly as it sounds! Featuring six malls, it is an outdoor shopping center that features over 300 shops and restaurants that have anything you could ever need. The highlight, in my opinion, is the little pubs and the kind people that fill the streets of Glasgow. I was there during the winter, so there were two Christmas markets featured on the style mile that were no doubt the highlight of my Glasgow adventures.