On the Wednesday of International Education Week (November 20th), CEA Prague held their first Reflections Abroad: Perspectives on Culture, Identity & Self conference. The event was packed with student presentations, a photo exhibition, a raffle and more fun activities. It was developed to give current students a time and space to academically reflect on their time abroad, making their experience more meaningful and worthwhile.
There were months of preparation, beginning with Lenka Vystrčilová, CEA Prague Academic Director, reaching out to various course professors to have their students send in short abstracts about their time abroad. The remainder of the cohort was also encouraged to present or contribute in some way. Those who were selected or volunteered met with Lenka individually to determine a topic and structure for their presentations. After a couple weeks, all the presenters met for a focus group to go through their presentations and receive constructive criticism from each other.
|Leaving advice for future students|
As all of this was being planned, the CEA staff was working to put together a fun room for all the attendees. There were many activities, including a photo exhibit filled with pictures sent from student contributors, Polaroid picture taking area, Velvet Revolution anniversary board, legacy book where advice was left for future students, postcard writing station where students wrote postcards to themselves, and an alumni ambassador table that gave information about how the students could continue their study abroad adventure.
|Writing postcard to self|
All the hard work from the students and staff paid off. The event went very well with all the students sharing different aspects of their experiences. Some connected what they learned from their courses and internships to their journey and others spoke about their personal development from the activities they engaged in. The words that these students shared were absolutely relatable and inspired their peers to start understanding how every moment they spent was something to learn from.
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