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10 posts from November 2014






After some weeks of adaptation our students are crossing by a comfort zone lifestyle. Visits to companies, mid-term personal goals review interviews and regular classes were carried out for improving their foreigner language and knowledge about business and culture in Spain. 


Visit to Ines Rosales



Visit to Basilippo a family-run olive oil production company, located in the Aljarafe region of Seville.  Basilippo specializes in the production of gourmet olive oil and has won many international awards for its quality extra virgin olive oil. 

We visited the grounds of the property, learn about the olive and olive tree cultivation and history, tour the installations, saw the olive oil extraction process, and met with individuals in charge of exportation and marketing.  



One of our daytrips to the Medieval Castles of Carmona


Some cultural activities

Flamenco dancing class.


Visit to La Carbonería, bohemian artists´space.



Spanish food cooking class. 



And a tocata! Wine learning workshop accompanied by the Spanish guitar music.


As you can check the semester is going splendidly!  Students recently returned from their 4-day immersion program in Morocco, one of the highlights of the semester for students.

Morocco 1

Morocco 2

In conversation with students, the majority have expressed their satisfaction with their academic experience.  Many have voiced how much they are learning about Spanish culture and history, are glad that they are able to fulfill major requirements, and feel that their Spanish fluency is improving.


Viaje a Marruecos del Grupo de Interés Expresión Cultural

Y por fin llegó el viaje a Marruecos…..Como colofón final a nuestro grupo de Interés, Expresión Cultural, hemos hecho una visita al país vecino, Marruecos, conociendo ciudades como Tetuán, Tánger y Chaouen. Nuestra visita comenzó en Tetuán.

Tras cruzar la frontera ceutí, nos dirigimos a la que fue en su día protectorado español, hasta 1956. Tetuán fue originalmente fundada por aquellos musulmanes y judíos que fueron expulsados en 1492 tras la conquista de Granada. Dicha ciudad mantiene una medina con más de 30 mil habitantes “intramuros”. Es una ciudad dentro de otra, con carácter muy local, pero a la vez, con influencia de diferentes naciones (la influencia española y francesa es evidente en algunos aspectos de la arquitectura de la ciudad).  Tuvimos la oportunidad de asistir a la Escuela de Arte y Oficio, donde los alumnos se dedican a la orfebrería, a la cerámica y a la costura. También pudimos conocer de primera mano el conservatorio superior de música de Tetuán, herencia española de los años 50, donde muchos alumnos compartieron sus inquietudes, tanto de canto, como en clases de piano y música andalusí.

Hemos visitado también la ciudad de Tanger, tras pasar por la costa atlántica que bordea parte de la ciudad (donde están los camellos). Ahí tuvimos a un guía local que nos mostró la pequeña medina, y nos dio tiempo libre para poder pasear por las transitadas calles del centro. Por último, hemos tenido la oportunidad de conocer la ciudad de Chauoen, en las montañas del Rift, en la cual, los estudiantes pudieron pasear por sus azuladas y encaladas calles, así como visitar la medina y el mercado de las especias.

Con esta pequeña y breve aproximación a la cultura vecina, los estudiantes han podido abrir los ojos y la mente a un mundo aparentemente muy distinto al cual estamos acostumbrados en el otro lado del estrecho de Gibraltar, conocer parte de su artesanía, de su forma de entender el día a día, parte de sus costumbres, de la forma de relacionarse, y por último, una manera de conocer el pasado de Andalucía y la influencia “andalusí” que aún pervive en las calles de Sevilla.


Cultural Reimbursement Program, Advanced Liberal Arts. Fall2014

Sahar Edalatpour, University of Wisconsin-Madison


Take a great tour on Spain and Spanish culture as well, through Sahar Edalatpour’s eyes. Beautiful  landscapes, castles, small  villages and huge cities are some of the lovely places  that Sahar shows us  through her  original video about the Cultural Reimbursement. Sahar wanted to  immerse herself in the Spanish culture, and take part in multiple cultural activities, going from   attending a soccer match to attending a bullfighting held in one of the newest bullrings in Spain.




Unbelievably, we have already reached the midpoint of the semester!


Academically, students are enjoying a diverse range of classes which include out-of class activities and interesting lectures. For instance, the students of the course Cervantes and El Quijote visited the Glorieta de Cervantes (Cervantes Plaza) at Parque Maria Luisa and discussed the political propaganda that surrounds  the building of this monument. Also, the well known Spanish writer Ana Rossetti, visited the class Women Writers of 20th century to talk about her work and to discuss with the students in the class about literature and gender.


Students at the Glorieta of Cervantes

Ana Rossetti y estudiantes

Ana Rossetti  with the students of the Women Writers class


Students have been also involved in multiple social activities that help them to connect more authentically with the Spanish culture. For instance, some students are doing volunteer work as English cultural assistants at schools, others in hospitals, others with T-Oigo, an association that works with children with hearing disabilities. Students  help them to learn English. In addition, students travelled with the program to Granada and Cádiz. Last weekend, the four Interest Groups of the Liberal program had their trip. Some of their highlights were: Sevilla and the Americas travelled to Lisbon where students visited the Tower of Belem and the Monument in honor of the Discoveries. Sports and Nature travelled to Madrid. There, students visited the High Performance Center, where the Spanish Olympic athletes live and train, and also the Real Madrid Stadium. Spain and her Regions travelled to Barcelona. They visited Boqueria Market, where they tried diverse regional food products. Cultural Expressions travelled to Morocco, where students learned about Andalusi music.

Grupos de Interés

We will keep you posted with the life of your students in Sevilla. Please, visit us in Facebook where you can follow the activities your students partake in.

We hope that you are enjoying a beautiful Autumn. Have a great Thanksgiving!

All the best from Sevilla!




After nearly two months at the University of Seville and Pablo de Olavide, we have completed the first half of the semester. After having personally spoken with all of the ALA students, it seems as though integration in university life and life in Seville has gone smoothly.  All the students have relationship with Spaniards, almost all have language partners, and from what they told us in these conversations, they are very satisfied with their housing and with their host families. It has truly been gratifying to hear that their level of confidence in their Spanish skills has increased and they feel more comfortable using the language in their daily and academic lives.

014"Los Muñoz". Jacquelyn Lanphear's (Elon University) host family

Last week we had our traditional Info&Pizza, the pizza being the perfect excuse to meet and chat about their final stretch: university exams, the help of tutors, exam policies, libraries, 24 hours study rooms, the virtual university, blackboard, etc. We also spoke again about the Cultural Reimbursement Program, a program which encourages the students to travel through Spain. We had the meeting in a cafe near our office; it was informal and pleasant to chat with the students after our presentations. The pizza (nearly one large per person) was a big hit! 

Little by little we have come to mid-semester in Seville, November being the “month of Don Juan”, which is why we are visiting places in Seville related to this myth for our SPAN4101 language class: Hospital de la Caridad, the Cemetery of Seville and, as a final out of class activity we will go to see the play by José Zorrilla in the Lope de Vega theater from the 1929 World’s Fair; this being one of many versions of the myth of Don Juan.

RondaCultural Reimbursement Program: Ronda (Málaga). Jacob Phillips (Macalester College), Benjamin Weber (Hope College) and Andres Kenney (Santa Clara University)

ANTHONYCultural Reimbursement Program: Málaga. Anthony Jasper (Yale University), Ilana Greenstein (Barnad College) and a spanish student from University of Seville

388Cultural Reimbursement Program: Barcelona. Jacquelyn Lanphear (Elon University)







Greetings from Seville

We have passed the middle of the semester and I would like to inform you about your student, and the development of the semester.  

All of the students took their midterm exams, both in CIEE and Cusos para Extranjeros courses. As last semesters, Language and Society offers the possibility of extra help through the “Centro de Recursos Lingüísticos” for those students with grammatical and linguistic barriers. During this semester, just one student was recommended to have personal tutor. Furthermore, CRL offered the workshop “False friends” and the “Prepositions (use of Spanish prepositions)”. Theses workshops were taught by tutors who are taking the “Curso de Formación para Profesores de Español como L2” and they were supervised by a language professor. The workshops are strongly recommended for Language and Society students. Eight students attended the first activity and four students took part in the second one. 

All courses continue to offer several out of the classroom activities.

  • “Spanish Intensive” groups organized activities in which students explored the center of Seville (Plaza Nueva, Plaza San Francisco, Catedral, Reales Alcázares, Patio de los Naranjos y Barrio Santa Cruz). They also visited the University where Language and Society students interviewed students from the University of Seville to determine the differences that exist between the American and Spanish university systems as well as the expectations of young professionals. 

In another activity, each student spoke with their Spanish host families to learn a Spanish recipe. Lastly, students visited the Market of Encarnación.

  • “Advanced Grammar and Composition” class visited “CICUS” (Center of Initiatives Cultural of University of Seville). Students also went to the premiere “Las altas presiones” a Spanish film which is part of the “Festival de Cine Europeo”. This activity was linked with the class “Cinema in the classroom”
  • In Advanced Language and Conversation” class, students had two of the four activities programmed for this semester in “Tandem project” with Spanish students from Instituto de Idiomas (University of Seville). During the first activity, they discussed some of the stereotypes in Spain and the USA. They also analyzed a couple current events broadcasted on TV in both countries dealing with the young generation. In the second meeting, they did some activities related to music. 

The main objective of these activities is that both groups have the chance to meet native speakers to practice their target language at a 50/50 rate.


In this same class, students had other classroom activities such as a survey about Spanish health habits or survey about the main concerns of Spaniards today, and possible solutions. They also visited the Exhibition "ReCherChez:Les femmes" at CICUS (University of Seville).

  • Gastronomy of Spain” class visited the Antiquarium to know the daily life in Roman Hispania, the “Convents of Seville” (with a tasting of sweets made by the nuns whom live in these convents), the Castle of San Jorge and Triana Market. They had different tasting; spices, Iberian pig products or chocolates. They also visited the Torre del Oro, Torre de la Plata, Atalazanas y Archivo de Indias (they were linked with the class “Products and new world cuisine”).
  • “Spanish Culture and Civilization” students visited the Archaeological Museum, walked around the Islamic Seville (El Salvador), the Barrio de Santa Cruz and Antigua Judería.


Also, the Language and Society students are taking part in the CIEE extracurricular visits and trips offered every week, such as the day trip to Córdoba and the overnight to Morocco. The students visited Morocco last weekend. During the first day of our arrival, they visited the women´s center “Darna” and the Medina in the city of Tánger (with local students). The second day, in Tetouan, students visits the Medina and the historic center of the city. The last day, the group visited Chefchaouen. Once again, the trip was a success and the students felt it was wonderful and unforgettable experience.

Please do not hesitate to get in contact with me if you need anything or have any doubts.




Time flies in Seville as we have crossed half of the fall semester.

Students are now more established in the local culture in Seville. They have had the opportunity of visiting Cádiz, Córdoba and Granada with CIEE and making the most of their time there.



The three students from the program already finished their time observing the professor from their classes. Maia, Elisabeth and Jenny took a lot of notes, and have been asking their doubts to the professor of the EDUC class. They all together have been working closely to get the
students to be prepared for starting their ‘teaching time’ with the students.

In the first six weeks of the course, the students from this program get familiarized with the principles and practical abilities for an effective teaching for foreigners. Inside the class the students learnt to use the necessary tools to teach a second language (planning, instruction, text book uses and other materials, teaching/learning of skills, affective filters, class management, grammatical and vocabulary teaching, mistake correction, etc.);


During the five-week of observation/collaboration at the ‘Irlandesas’ school the students have learnt to observe, collaborate and evaluate real classes with the aim of prepare themselves for the teaching practices. The TDP students started these ‘practices’ last week. Thus, they are now part of the teaching staff, by living and experiencing the immersion in an educative institution with a success.


Considering their results in the mid-term exam, the work they have done writing their diaries and observation briefs, and what they tell about their ‘practices’ at school in their personalized tutorial meetings with their professor, they are having a very positive experience by far.

All the best,
TDP – Team: Olga, Jorge, Sergio.




Greetings from Seville!

Here we are again to share with you some of the highlights of the academic term thus far. The Business and Society program is full of enriching activities such as company visits, academic exchange seminars focusing on current issues in business (Global Discussions), company visits, internships with companies and several activities with local students.


Four “Global Discussions” have been organized thus far, with a participation of 31 local students. This kind of activities have been developed by the CIEE Business and Society staff to help students to meet more Spaniards under a more academic atmosphere. 

  • “The Globalization”
  • “Same age, different youth: Differences and similarities between American and  Spanish youth people”
  • “Politics Marketing 2.0: Differences and similarities”.
  • “Economy and Society: United States vs. European Union” 



As usual, our business professors have been organizing different company visits focused on business in Spain and the European Union. So far, the following company visits have taken place in the CIEE Business and Society program this term:


  • La Gitana: Bodegas Hidalgo La Gitana is one of the oldest Sherry Wine producers in the world
  • EPES-061: The public Health Emergencies Company in Andalusia
  • Worlwide Payment Systems: A Sevilla based company that processes and manages payments and information between thousands of hotels and travel agencies worldwide using the most advanced managing instruments.



Students had also the opportunity of meeting with local students in a Service Management class out of class activity.

The Business and Society program is full of enriching activities such as company visits, academic exchange seminars focusing on current issues in business, internships with companies, company visits and several activities with local students.

Global montaje


We've had meetings with all of the students doing internships to follow up with them and address any issues that may occur. All of the students are happy at their internships and learning about differences in the business culture.


Also 16 students attended a session organized by the 2 students interning at Telefonica. The session was led by Andrés Saborido, country manager at Wayra where students could learn and debate with Spanish entrepreneurs about differences and similarities on entrepreneurship in Spain, Europe, Latin America and the US. Some of the entrepreneurs presented their projects and asked our students for suggestions on how to improve their products.


An amazing daytrip to the City of Córdoba took place on June 7th. During the trip students could visit the beautiful Mosque-Cathedral, the Alcázar de los Reyes Cristianos and the old Synagogue.



Volunteering in Seville

Emily Guse

This post is by Emily Guse, a student from University of Wisconsin-Madison. During the Fall 2014 semester she is participating in the the CIEE Liberal Arts program.

Yesterday was my first day at Colegio de las Esclavas (yes...that means's a Catholic school, and it translates to slaves of God...different connotations in Spanish). I am an assistant, which turns out is a little bit like student teaching. I get to create activities and assign homework, a.k.a. I have more influence in the classroom than I could've ever asked for. I love it! I have 4 classes in total. Monday (which I haven't gone to yet because last Monday was a holiday) I have a class of 12-year-olds, Tuesday is also 12-year-olds, and Wednesday is one class of 14-year-olds and another class of 17-year-olds. Each class has a vastly different energy than the others, and I have a fondness of each of them. Okay, I say that, but so far I've only been to 2 of them (the high schoolers had an exam today). 

My first task was to create a powerpoint about myself, as an introduction. The 12-year-olds spent the ENTIRE HOUR enthusiastically asking me questions: "Do you have a dog?" "What is your favorite fútbol (I accidentally answered Packers before I remembered that fútbol is soccer, oops) team?" "Are there a lot of Asians in Wisconsin (I can't make this stuff up, folks)?" If they liked my answer to their question, they started cheering and banging on their desks. If I gave a wrong answer, they started boo-ing. They will enthusiastically boo if you answer "Do you prefer Sevilla FC or Betis?" wrong. Comparatively, they gave a reaction that Wisconsinites might give to someone who says "Oh, I LOVE the Vikings".

The 14-year-olds (as expected) were less enthusiastic. I blew through my powerpoint in 5 minutes (versus the 40 minutes from the previous class) and the kids maybe asked 10 questions. However, the older kids were more interested in how I enjoyed Sevilla and if I was adjusting well. Points to you, 14-year-olds. They also were very animated about making sure I was involved in their community. Some of them found me after class and invited me to see the play that the school drama club is performing. I was overjoyed to how excited these kids were about their play. Unfortunately, I will be in Barcelona during the performance.

I also got to assign homework this week: with a friend, research a little bit about American football and write down 3 facts. Easy. That was entirely on the spot, I probably could've come up with something better had I known that I was going to give an assignment!

I am so blessed with the opportunities I've had here in Sevilla :)




Students of the Magazine Reporting and Writing course interview Western Saharan students from the University of Seville at CICUS.

Dear friends,

As our Fall 2014 semester advances, all of the students of the Communication, New Media and Journalism program are fully involved in their academic projects and their social life in Seville. A visit to our Facebook page will allow you to get a glimpse of some of it as well as regular updates if you "like" it. We're approaching the busiest part of the semester and there will be plenty to see and read in the next few weeks. This is the time when all of the hard work done so far will start materializing into projects that will expand our knowledge of and links with our community.

This semester we've for the first time invited six students from the University of Seville to participate for credit into our Spanish Skills in Context: Podcast Reporting course. This is part of our new agreement with the Centro de Iniciativas Culturales de la Universidad de Sevilla (CICUS), where some of CNMJ courses are hosted. Exchange between local and CNMJ students at an academic level is one of the goals of our program and study center.

So far, motivation seems to be high on all fronts. Seville, like the rest of Spain, continues to enjoy an unusually prolonged summer, which has contributed to everyone’s good disposition towards working outside of the classroom. We hope that when rain and cold come, coinciding with deadlines, final exams and assignments, everyone will stay just as tuned.

Some of our usual collaborators and some new ones have already visited the different courses of the CNMJ program this semester:

+  The journalist Sandra Camps, director of the Radio Nacional de España program ‘En Primera Persona’, talked to the students of the course Spanish Skills in Context: Podcast Reporting about journalism with a social focus.

+  Students of the Urban Photography Workshop experimented with their guest Miguel Romero on the rudiments of image reproduction by creating a camera obscura out of a show box and magnifying glass. They also learnt about the work of this interesting photographer, professor at the School of Communications at the University of Seville.

+  Video-artist María Cañas, who enjoyed a retrospective cycle at the European Film Festival of Seville last year, visited the Digital and Visual Culture in Contemporary Spain course for a talk titled “Militant cinephagy and less dough means more creativity” and a subsequent discussion with students about digital culture and social activism.

+  Four members of the Western Sahara League of Students at the University of Seville (Mohamed, Dah, Maha and Mohamed) were invited to the course Magazine Reporting and Writing in order to be interviewed about their life growing up in the refugee camps of Tindouf, as students in Seville, as well as to share their views about their views on the Moroccan-Saharawi conflict and the role of the International Community, particularly that of Spain, France and the US.

+  Our regular collaborator Eduardo del Campo, staff reporter from the newspaper El Mundo, novelist and poet, visited the Magazine Reporting and Writing course in order to present his latest book "Maestros del Periodismo" (Masters of Journalism), which is a compilation of some of the best writers in Spanish journalism of the last five decades.

Juan Carlos Blanco, former Director of the newspaper El Correo de Andalucía and professor of the course The Metamorphosis of News and Media from Gutenberg to Zuckerberg invited his students to the newsroom of the newspaper for a session with the team that manages their digital version. 


Students of the Urban Photography Workshop course experiment with their ready-made "camera obscura" during the visit of photographer Miguel Romero.

In addition to these academic activities, the weekend of October 16-19 all CNMJ students went on an academic trip to Morocco accompanied by the professor of the Urban Photography Workshop, Antonio Pérez, and by CNMJ RD Óscar Ceballos. They had a very busy three-and-half-day trip, spending one night in Algeciras first in order to take the Tarifa-Tangier ferry the following day. In Tangier we visited the old medina, which includes the oldest diplomatic site of the U.S. Government, TALIM. We then spent two days in the town of Chefchaouen, in the Riff mountains, Chefchaouen, in which our students were hosted by the families of local students and worked on a photographic project creating meta-images based on special memories of their hosts. During our last day in Morocco we visited the historic medina of Tetouan before crossing the Strait of Gibraltar again. It was a memorable experience for all.

If you haven't done it recently, I'd very much recommend you to visit our website of students projects,, which is updated each semester. If you click on the TEAM tab you can meet our academic team and some of our usual collaborators.

More news soon.


Óscar Ceballos