This semester junior Christian Bailey, a student-athlete and school record holder on the men's cross country team is studying abroad in Guadalajara, Mexico. Here is his account of his trip so far.
This semester I am studying abroad in sunny Guadalajara, Mexico. For the next five months I will be living in Mexico's second largest city known as the "Pearl of the West." I am an exchange student at the Universidad Panamericana, one of the top universities in Mexico. With the help of Dr. Quesada, a professor in the College of Charleston School of Business, I was lucky enough to receive a grant to full fund my trip. While here I will be conducting research on green supply chain management in addition to taking business courses taught in Spanish.
I have been in Mexico for a little over a month now, and have already been able to experience a lot. Here in Guadalajara I have attended a professional soccer game, done some bartering in local markets, dried my laundry on a clothesline for the first time, and eaten more tortillas than I want to think about. I live in an apartment with a Mexican woman named Lupita who cooks me delicious and authentic meals. Mexican food has much more variety and is healthier than many people think.
So far I have also been able to go on a few excursions outside the city. One of the first weekends here I traveled with a group of other international students to the small beach town of Sayulita. It was definitely a rare experience to get to enjoy such warm temperatures in the middle of winter. Last week I went on a field trip to the archaeological site known as Guachimontones to see ancient ruins with my History of Mexico class. On top of the terraced pyramids is where human sacrifices were made the gods. I also have visited the town of Tlaquepaque, which is known for its artwork. Chances are that any Mexican glassware or pottery that you have seen cam from Tlaquepaque or the nearby town of Tonalá.
I have a little less than four months left here in Mexico and I look forward to packing in as many unique experiences as possible. I miss my friends, family, teammates, and Charleston, but I know that opportunities like this are something that I have to take full advantage of.