Excursion to Novi Sad

As one of my cultural activities, I got the opportunity to travel to another city in Serbia called Novi Sad. My short trip to the city of Novi Sad is by far my favorite cultural activity so far. After a harsh winter in Eastern Europe, the warm weather, the blooming of the flowers, and the …

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The Importance of Letting Go – Keeping in Touch with Friends and Family back home while Abroad

“You can never cross the ocean until you have the courage to lose sight of the shore.” - Christopher Columbus Your decision to study an academic-year abroad will undoubtedly leave an impact on your loved ones back home. While communication and reassurance is important, I’m here to remind you how critical it is for you …

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Could We Be Doing More to Minimize Our Use of Plastic?

Protecting Our Planet: From a Cultural Perspective It was the weekend before my departure to Belgrade, Serbia that I watched the documentary ‘A Plastic Ocean,' and couldn't believe how rapid our environment is degrading and how much effort was lacking towards its protection. The proliferation of plastic products is developing a "disposable" lifestyle and an …

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You’re Going Where To Do What?!

That was the question my each and every member of my family asked when I told them I was participating in this program. They couldn't believe that I, a Belgrade-born native/heritage speaker of Serbian, was going to spend the summer in Belgrade taking language classes. They could not stop laughing. Naturally it sounded like a …

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A Rock Pilgrim’s Progress

Students doing foreign study generally don’t like to see themselves as tourists, and in my first week in Belgrade, I thought of myself as a pilgrim. Anyone who has ever drawn parallels between religion and rock music ought to appreciate the history of rock in the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia (SFRJ). During the new …

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Every Day a New Adventure

I have had a wonderful time in Belgrade these past few weeks. Since the last time I wrote a blogpost for American Councils I took part in an academic conference, interviewed with a local newspaper, and began volunteering with a humanitarian organization for refugees in Belgrade. Though I could probably write a five thousand-word essay …

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Cognates in Serbia

Greetings from Belgrade, Serbia! I’m studying here through American Councils this summer as part of the Balkan Language Initiative (BLI). My interest in studying Serbian was sparked during my first year in Yale University’s MA program in European and Russian Studies. The language will be invaluable as I continue to pursue my broader research interests …

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