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Week 5 of My Study Abroad Trip in Haifa, Israel

Hello everyone! I hope you all had a great week. This week was very busy for me due to the holidays coming to an end. My schedule is packed Monday-Thursday due to classes and my internship. Day by day, I feel that I am getting stronger in my Arabic conversational skills especially during my internship where I get to practice it often. I began my application this week for the Critical Language Scholarship which will enable me to study the Arabic language in Oman, Morocco or Jordan during the summer after my study abroad trip here in Israel if I am accepted. I think that this will be a great natural next step for my language studies to live in a country where Arabic is the official language. Moreover, I have thoroughly enjoyed the Terrorism and Responses class that I am taking here at the University of Haifa. Every week we discuss highly controversial topics like the Arab-Israeli conflict, domestic terrorism, the Algerian War and much more. It is interesting to listen to different perspectives and arguments and see how the international community tries to define the definition of terrorism. The definition that we came up with in class is that terrorism is the use or threat of violence directed in pursuit of, or in service of a political aim. This definition is not agreed upon internationally because different states have different interest and objectives, so there seems to be a fine line when they come together in forums like the United Nations to address this issue. This week I had my interview for the Model United Nations Club that I wrote about in one of my earlier blogs. It went very well, and I am confident that I will be accepted into the club. I gave my speech on the refugee crisis in Yemen and the need for urgent humanitarian assistance in this country. Additionally, I can receive credit for participating in the class and it will be a great way for me to become friends with the local students at the University. I look forward to further developing my public speaking skills and learning how to draft strong resolutions that will be able to have a positive impact on the lives of the people I am writing them for through this club/class. Lastly, I ended the week off by going to the local Paintball arena in Haifa with some of my friends from the international school. This is something that I would normally never agree to do while I was living in the states, but I am happy that I tried it. It turned out to be a lot of fun and I made some memories that I will never forget. A piece of advice that I would give to anyone considering studying abroad is to try to not say “no” as much as possible. Saying “yes” will open up the door to many experiences that will sometimes take you out of your comfort zone but will in return be rewarding and you just might like it in the end. I would like to thank everyone for reading this week and look forward to sharing my next week’s adventures with you all!

My friends Martha and Martha from Liberia. I was so happy to meet them because my mother and many members of my family are from Liberia and it felt like a piece of home here in Israel. ☺️

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  1. As usual, thank you Brendan for week 5 experiences and lessons. It is great that you are so open to saying yes to doing things while you are there and especially while you are young enough to do and enjoy them. Thanks for sharing. Have a great week 6 there. Take care.


  2. I love reading about your study abroad experiences – both the academics and cultural highlights. You’re really building a wonderful resume and foundation for your future career. You’re doing a great job Brendan!


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