Sadly the spring semester has come to a close here in Rabat. Students have returned home, are extending their time in Morocco, or are busy exploring and traveling the world. It was a wonderful semester filled with laughs, challenges, and of course growth. We asked Janice Byth of Goucher College to close out the semester with our final Spring Newsletter. Enjoy!
The spring semester is starting to wrap up! Students are turning in their last papers, preparing presentations, and studying for their last Arabic exam. It has truly been a wonderful semester here. Many students are returning home where they will be working, continuing studying Arabic, but some however are staying in Morocco longer to work and travel.
Students had their second Arabic Speed Meetings with local university students. This time around students discussed a range of topics from gender roles to pop culture all in Darija.
One weekend, a group of students and Moroccan buddies decided to go paint balling outside of Rabat in the town of Temara. There was lots of competition, and of course laughs!
Students and buddies at paint balling.
Photo Credit: Robert DeMata
The students also had their last CIEE excursion of the semester. They stopped in Ceuta, one of two Spanish enclaves in the north of Morocco where they enjoyed tapas and exploring enroute to the blue city of Chefchaouen.
In Chefchaouen, the students had a couscous-eating contest on Friday and then enjoyed a tour of the city. Later in the afternoon, the students participated in artisanal workshops such as carpet weaving, leather, brass, and painting. The next morning was full of hiking, swimming and exploring the Rif Mountains.
Following the Chefchaouen excursion, students took a trip together one last time to the Sahara Desert. Along the way to the desert they stopped in Aït Benhaddou, a UNSCO World Heritage Site and the setting of many movies such as Gladiator. Once in the Sahara, the students enjoyed a camel trek to their campsite where they slept in the sand under a full moon.
Students riding camels in the Sahara
Photo Credit: Grace Howland
Student of the Month
Name: Abby Senuty
Hometown: Bellingham, WA
University: St. Olaf College
Abby, known as Nadia in her host family because “Abby” means my father in Arabic, has been enjoying her time here in Morocco immensely. She chose to study in Morocco to further develop her language skills in Arabic and French and to experience living with a host family.
Abby’s favorite part of life in Morocco is living with her host family because it “Includes having siblings for the first time! Any time spent with my family is my favorite time here.” She loves to play soccer with her ten-year-old host brother, which has turned into to a toilet paper ball after a broken picture incident. She also enjoys the mixture of language in Morocco and that she can “speak a weird blend of Darija and French and still be (mostly) understood.”
Abby’s favorite past times while living in Morocco are: exploring and eating in the Medina, creating new pasta dishes at the Study Center for under a dollar, and extreme jay-walking. She also enjoys trying out different cafes around Rabat with her friend Julie and analyzing them.