MUW honors students learn from month in Belgium

August 25, 2012 9:11:02 PM



Students in the Ina Gordy Honors College at Mississippi University for Women recently returned from a month-long study abroad trip to Brussels, Belgium. 


Fourteen students and two student mentors traveled with MUW faculty members Dr. Kendall Dunkelberg and Dr. Brian Anderson and lived in the city of Brussels near the European Union headquarters. 


Students took part in two honors seminar classes, "Modern European Literature and Art" and "Toward an 'Ever Closer Union'? European Integration and Identity." In conjunction with their studies, students visited nine art museums, including the Royal Museums of Ancient and Contemporary Art, as well as museums dedicated to Pablo Picasso, RenĂ© Magritte, Victor Horta, Vincent Van Gogh, M. C. Escher, and HergĂ©, the writer and illustrator of the "Tin Tin" comics.  


Students also toured the European Parliament in Brussels, the European Commission, the European Council and the European Economic and Social Committee. 


Each weekend, the group went on cultural excursions to Bruges, Ghent, Amsterdam, The Hague and the World War I battlefields of Ypres. Many students took advantage of their free time in Europe to travel on their own, visiting Paris, London, Dublin, Frankfurt and other destinations both in and outside of Belgium. Upon their return to the United States, students are completing research projects on European Union policies and 19th or 20th Century Belgian poets, playwrights, painters and architects. 


In addition to their academic lessons, students gained valuable cultural experience living in a major metropolitan, French- and Dutch-speaking European capital. Students bought their own groceries and cooked their own meals in shared apartments, and they traveled by metro, train, bus and tram.  


Students who took part in this study abroad opportunity have successfully completed their sophomore year in MUW's Residential Honors program.