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Isabela G Ferraro
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Europeans are viewing this as more of their problem and are stepping up so there is a bit less pressure on the United States, but they should be doing more. Europeans should be more involved in European diplomacy as they know the situations and histories better, they should not be so reliant on the U.S. to step in and make the decisions on areas we are mot as well versed in. The no-fly zone was described as a very risky option that could trigger a nuclear response. The term “ally” was emphasized to be binding of actions versus the commonly loosely used version that simply displays that you “like” each other or align well with them and favor them. The first rule of NATO fight club is knowing the actual treaty, in reference to one NATO country being able to veto an idea and not automatically having all of them... Continue reading
Posted Mar 22, 2022 at In Their Words
A few answers for the reason for war were historical background, increase of sphere of influence, and the vision of how the world should be with a possible new world order that is not U.S. dominant. Since there are so many reasons to consider, it makes it very difficult for the U.S. to know how to best tackle resolving or deescalating the situation. One speaker explained that the U.S. had a huge hand in writing the source code for post Cold War world, and there’s a fear of what the world order might look like if we lose that place after the end of this next conflict. The gas prices were mentioned as it was explained that politicians must ask what they can reasonably ask of the U.S. society as strategy starts to affect the domestic population with things like taxes or a draft. Continue reading
Posted Mar 22, 2022 at In Their Words
The Governor of Vermont spoke on the need to support Ukraine, especially after seeing parents leave their children to fight, faced with the question, is it better to leave my child without a father or a future? He applauded their resolve and strength, having the heart and will with the truth and moral high ground on their side. It was very interesting for me to listen to General Weidner speak because in my military science classes we have recently learned what the U.S. Strategic Command does. He had mentioned the importance of needing to be able to prepare to deter both China and Russia at the same time as we have spoken about in our Asian Politics class. In terms of the actual strategy, he emphasized that integrated is better than just coordinated, meaning there is deterrence across all domains such as cyber. He next mentioned how the U.S. people... Continue reading
Posted Mar 22, 2022 at In Their Words
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This semester is the first time I’ve brought a car on campus and it is glorious. Knowing that I am able to leave whenever I want is an almost better feeling than actually going. This weekend I’m making a trip back home since my uncle from Puerto Rico will be there and my sister just gave birth to her first child, making me an aunt for the first time. Last weekend a couple of friends and I went to Lowell, Massachusetts to eat Dim Sum with a rook brother who is now enlisted and studying at another university. Without having cars on campus, you are limited to Norwich and Northfield. They have their perks, but realistically it is nice to be able to explore places further out and meet with people out of state. A large con of having a car on campus is dealing with the snow, especially the... Continue reading
Posted Feb 23, 2022 at In Their Words
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This past weekend I got to go back to the barn to watch the Cavalry Troop trainee demos. This is a demonstration of what they have learned throughout their training, put to practical use. One example of what you may see if you attend is the diamond formation. This can be used to escort personnel through a crowd to keep them protected. It is nice to be able to go back to my roots here at Norwich and support the troop. The following Monday, the trainees received their cords from current Troopers. I was able to pass my cord down and see how the Trooper I passed my cord down to two years ago has developed since her cord ceremony. The trainees have just a few steps to go until they have the chance to earn their sabers and officially become Troopers. Continue reading
Posted Feb 23, 2022 at In Their Words
A while ago it was 100s night for seniors. Many seniors opted to go to Cornerstone to celebrate in a familiar place that has strong ties with the university. Seniors have the opportunity to register to win a variety of prizes everyday until we graduate. Calendars where passed out listed what gift is being raffled off each day. It is crazy to think we are way less than 100 days until we graduate and more on from this college era in our lives. I know I will be going to BOLC for training to be an Air Defense Artillery officer after graduation, but we still don’t even know the dates we are going, much less where we will be stationed afterwards. These last four years felt so long, but this last semester is flying by. I wish it would slow down so I could fully appreciate and soak in everything... Continue reading
Posted Feb 23, 2022 at In Their Words
Prior to starting my senior seminar class, I had assumed the main focus would be the research paper but it is actually a very dynamic class with discussions and guest speakers. My senior seminar class for International Studies is once a week for three hours. Last week we had President Anarumo speak to us about his experiences abroad. One portion of the President’s lessons was about the South Korean flag. I had actually know it’s meaning prior because my roommate freshman year was an international student from South Korea and she had explained its meaning to me. I like just how much meaning is behind the flag in terms of their ideals like yin and yang, harmony, symmetry, balance, and circulation. The metaphor of the flag being that as a typical US citizen you would have no idea what their flag actually means. To me, this meant it is important... Continue reading
Posted Feb 23, 2022 at In Their Words
One part of Norwich that I hadn’t even realized I had missed is the hockey games. I used to go to games all the time with friends, especially sophomore year before being too busy as cadre and Covid got in the way. Last weekend I went to the men’s hockey game where we won by a landslide. Even if we're all wearing masks, its still nice to see things starting to feel more normal. We arrived a little late and joined some friends in the students section. I had forgotten how rowdy the section can be with their jeering and taunts (some more appropriate than others). Naturally when the Zamboni got on the ice, the student section was overly supportive of his work. On the seats were small yellow towels which made me happy since I’m definitely a fan of free stuff. Randomly during the game, I saw that one... Continue reading
Posted Jan 28, 2022 at In Their Words
At a school like Norwich, especially in the Corps and with ROTC, it can be hard to find time for hobbies. However, during the winter, things can get dreary with the sun rarely being out and without much fun to do when it’s negative degrees out. Having a hobby that you can do in the comfort of your own room can be a productive and fun way to raise your spirits and develop a skill. Recently, I’ve been making paintings with watercolor. This is very simple and does not require much money or space. All I have now is a watercolor palette from Amazon that came with the brushes and the pad of watercolor paper. Finding time and motivation to paint has been tough, but since being in quarantine I have made four paintings. In addition to the paintings, I have worked on digital drawing on my iPad, written a... Continue reading
Posted Jan 28, 2022 at In Their Words
I’ve gone through this whole pandemic being smart and safe and yet this past Saturday night I was very sick. My throat was tightened and it hurt to breathe. I called my mother and she advised me to go to a medical facility immediately as any time there is difficulty with breathing it could be very serious. However, it was very late at night and so we waited it out and I got tested for Covid on Monday. The sickness itself was only very bad for the first two days and there was a quick recovery time. By this time, I just have a bit of a residual cough. Thankfully there is not too much happening this week that I have to miss, but it is very lonely being in a single room on quarantine. The food situation is far less than ideal, with small meal pick up time windows... Continue reading
Posted Jan 27, 2022 at In Their Words
The process to come back on campus from a semester abroad was very tough. I struggled to find an officer job since not many people study abroad in the Spring which would leave vacancies I could have filled. However, I ended up being offered a PL slot for 5th company and was excited for the opportunity to be cadre once again. I wasn’t given a room until many emails and a couple calls left me with a single on 5th deck of Gerard. Now I am settled and happy with the extra room and privacy that a single offers. The stairs don't faze me anymore as this is my third year on fifth deck. My ID card wasn’t activated for a couple days so I had to wait outside until someone could let me in and I couldn’t eat food at the chow hall. Although the process was very stressful... Continue reading
Posted Jan 27, 2022 at In Their Words
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My last days in Spain I felt content and very ready to leave. The beginning was very difficult to adjust to. Interestingly enough, I had more culture shock in Spain than I did in Taiwan - or maybe I should say that it was much easier to adjust in Taiwan because it felt more welcoming and was an environment that fit better with my values, allowing me to feel more comfortable and a stronger sense of belonging. I think that in Taiwan I had a much better support system and had a great roommate that I did most things with and she was much more proficient in Mandarin so she took me under her wing in the language department. Although as a whole I did not specifically enjoy my time in Spain, I respect the experience for what it was and how it helped me grow as a person. I... Continue reading
Posted Dec 21, 2021 at In Their Words
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I’m glad I was able to make it to a soccer game during my time in Spain. It was a difficult process to get tickets for the teams I specifically wanted to see, but the team I was able to get tickets for was one of Sevilla’s teams - Sevilla FC. Since I saved money by not going on any big trips, I decided to splurge a bit on my ticket so I could have a good seat in the middle and close to the field. I ended up being just a few rows back from the field and loved feeling so close to the action. At the start of the game there was a song that everyone sang and throughout the game there were periodic chants and cheers from the stands. We ended up winning 1-0. At the end of the game I stayed as long as I could... Continue reading
Posted Dec 21, 2021 at In Their Words
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Although we did not have a Thanksgiving Break, there were Holidays that fell conveniently in a row so that there were open days for a long trip without missing any class. Many people planned trips to places such as Germany, but I wanted to go somewhere closer and without a plane ride to eliminate the chances of Covid related issues. I also didn’t want to go on a very long trip considering that finals were that next week and I wanted to have plenty of buffer time to study. I settled on spending three days in Faro, Portugal. It was only about a three hour bus ride from Sevilla. Crossing the border to Portugal, officials stopped the bus and got on to check everyone’s Covid vaccinations and tests which was drastically different from my trip weeks ago to Lagos, Portugal. That trip our bus was not stopped at all and... Continue reading
Posted Dec 21, 2021 at In Their Words
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One of the most interesting experiences was my day trip to Gibraltar, a British overseas territory. The following are fun facts I learned throughout the trip that included walking through the airport runway, the caves of the big rock, the monkey area, and the center area. There are free buses for transportation to avoid traffic and to lower the number of cars on the road, also considering the very limited parking spots available. As in England, the cars originally drove on the left side of the road. However, this changed after a considerable and consistent amount of car accidents occurred on the border with Spain as cars had to adjust to driving on opposite sides of the road. The big rock is one of the main attractions along with the monkeys that reside there. The rock includes different stones such as Jurassic Limestone that is two million years old. The... Continue reading
Posted Dec 21, 2021 at In Their Words
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In Sevilla there are two soccer teams, Sevilla and Real Betis, with a big rivalry between the two. Today was the soccer derby between the two. My host sisters and I watched the game over dinner, with each sister rooting for a different team. They explained to me the difference of the two teams and this is my impression of the two teams based on that information: Sevilla is a high performing team with intense fans. They are used to winning and feeling successful. Real Betis is a type of meme, underdog team. They don’t have a great record, but the fans are excited and supportive whether they win or lose. When someone messes up it’s a joke for someone to say that it is a “Betis goal”. When picking between the two, the logical choice would be Sevilla. In the Premier League I’m a Liverpool fan, also successful and... Continue reading
Posted Nov 7, 2021 at In Their Words
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While in Barcelona, we went on a walk to explore some parks and landmarks. Close to our AirBnB there was a large park. At first we were merely going to walk through the park, but noticed it was much larger and interesting and decided to explore. In the middle of the park was a very impressive fountain and around it was music playing and people dancing. On our walk we stumbled upon a large church. Outside there was a large crowd listening to a band playing music and watching a group of elderly people dancing in front of the band. Off to the side there was a type of flea market/tag sale situation going on. There was a wide range of things being sold from the stands, from religious memorabilia to binoculars to car models to postcards. Upon entering the church I realized it was even larger than I had... Continue reading
Posted Nov 7, 2021 at In Their Words
When I visited Barcelona for the weekend, I had very mixed feelings. In some ways I realized I had taken Sevilla for granted, which helped me feel more comfortable and relieved once I returned. Although Sevilla is much more posh and the people tend to be more rude, it is a much safer and smaller city than Barcelona. In Barcelona there are a lot of people which I didn’t enjoy too much, but it was refreshing to see a bit more diversity in the people. The streets were much dirtier and livelier, especially at night. The amount of creepy men and catcalls was very unsettling and uncomfortable and there was much less respect for personal space. Even when I was walking to the Sangrada Familia at 1000 in broad daylight I got catcalled and taunted as I was walking through a park and needed to pass a group of boys... Continue reading
Posted Nov 7, 2021 at In Their Words
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In Barcelona we signed up for a Haunted Walking Tour for Halloween. This tour was not at all what we expected. Instead of myths and legends, it included mostly real and tragic stories. One building we visited had been owned by a woman who was called the “Vampire.” She lived in the district filled with desperate people who resorted to things like prostitution to get by and survive. Her house was investigated when there were screams heard from outside. Inside they found there were sick and frail children because she was draining them of their blood in order to sell pints for personal profit. We learned a lot about the tragedies of deaths and suffering based on religions. People were told that they had to either change their religion or leave. Naturally it is difficult to just pick up and leave your whole life behind and start new, so many... Continue reading
Posted Nov 7, 2021 at In Their Words
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My host family’s apartment is right by the Guadalquivir river. Everyday I walk across the bridge on my commute to class and looking over the water there are almost always people kayaking or paddle boarding. Every once in a while you can see larger ships docked on the side of the river. Only once was I able to spot a fish when looking over the bridge railing, but it was a pretty large size fish. The side across from our apartment has a long boardwalk with many restaurants and bars. There is even a pop up gym right by the water. The gym is in the form of a cube shaped storage unit that opens us, containing an assortment of bars, weights, and other equipment. The boardwalk is perfect for a place to run, a perfect two mile distance back and forth on the main boardwalk area. The majority of... Continue reading
Posted Oct 13, 2021 at In Their Words
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The cars in Spain all tend to look very similar, much smaller and more compact than most cars we see in the United States. I’m not a huge fan of them, especially since I love being able to spot cool cars with all different builds and colors. There are many bikes on the road, and they often ride in between lanes and will gather at the front of all the cars at stop lights. In Sevilla, there are often horse carriages on the roads as they give rides mainly around the Maria Luisa park and the throughout the city center. There are bike lanes all over the city, filled with electric scooters and bikes of all kinds. Everyday you can spot a businessman in a full suit riding a scooter to work. It’s common to see a couple riding a scooter together, the person in the back hanging onto the... Continue reading
Posted Oct 13, 2021 at In Their Words
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El Camino del Rey, nicknamed El Caminito, is a walkway with most of it pinned along the mountain side. It can be scary, most of the time with a clear view of the water or ground below through the slats of wood. It was beautiful, the sun shining off the water. We went with a large group with a tour guide. We ran into a couple of goats minding their own business on the mountain. There was a platform of glass that meant you could stand and see clear straight down of the flowing water. For the most part, it felt secure besides the very end stair climb in which the wood planks were further apart. Once we finished, we were brought to a restaurant for lunch. In our smaller group that was just those travelling from Sevilla, there was an elderly couple and a young couple. After eating we... Continue reading
Posted Oct 11, 2021 at In Their Words
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This weekend, my roommate and I visited Lagos, Portugal. Our host sister had worked in Lagos and gave us a long list of places to go during our time there. We arrived Friday afternoon, eating at a sushi buffet before checking into our hotel. We immediately noticed a difference in atmosphere. There was much more English spoken, and we weren’t glared at when people heard us speaking in English. There were many people dressed more casually, so it’s easy to fit in whether you’re dressed up or down. We spent the evening strolling through the many streets with all different types of stores, restaurants, and bars. We ended the night by buying a pizza and sitting on the beach until late at night, getting to see the sparkling lights from across the water. The next day, we had a three hour kayaking trip around the shore and the many caves.... Continue reading
Posted Oct 11, 2021 at In Their Words
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This past weekend, the study abroad program, API, had a two-day trip to Granada, Spain. The bus ride was about three hours, and we had hotel rooms arranged for us to stay in for Friday night. The first day consisted of a walking tour and a Flamenco show. The youngest dancer was only 15 years old and it was her first formal performance. Their facial expressions were so animated and serious during their dance performance, accompanied by a guitarist and singer. The second day featured a trip to Alhambra, a palace and fortress with a beautiful view of the city and much greenery around the premises. We also were given much free time to explore the city and see the clear Mediterranean influence in the products and food in the area. Granada has a law that any restaurant selling beer must also give the buyer a free appetizer, or tapas.... Continue reading
Posted Sep 26, 2021 at In Their Words
Being abroad in a country with a different primary language, there is bound to be a language barrier and more frequent difficulties in communication. I try to speak as much Spanish as possible with my host family, but when it is needed my host mom understands enough English to understand the gist of what I’m saying. Her daughter knows a lot more English and can speak it very easily. All of my classes here are taught fully in Spanish, which can be frustrating at times when there are certain things that I don’t understand and my professor cannot speak enough English to clarify part of a confusing lesson or the instructions for an assignment. The classes are all two hours long, a very long time especially considering we are coming back from Covid times when the classes were almost all online and at Norwich mainly 50 minutes long. Listening to... Continue reading
Posted Sep 26, 2021 at In Their Words