My name is Zelia Pantani and in the spring of 2016 I will be traveling to the French Riviera. I chose to study abroad for a multitude of reasons, the first being I went to high school in Hamden, CT and am currently in my sophomore year of college in Hamden, CT. I feel its important to get a change of scenery and what a perfect opportunity to change the scenery than under a structured learning program in a whole different country for four months. As a member of the 3+1 BS/MBA business program at Quinnipiac, I have a rigorous course schedule that does not allow me to waste any credits—they all need to count in some way. For that reason, I started looking into areas that provided science classes so I am guaranteed to graduate on time as a member of my 3+1 program. After doing some research, I stumbled upon the beautiful French Riviera, to which I heard border the Mediterranean Sea, and decided it was the perfect opportunity to study abroad and complete my academic requirements.
I foresee my growing knowledge of Rites of Passage theory to help my growth while I am abroad by pushing me to immerse myself within the culture. It is clear through the theory that without truly submersing myself into the culture and getting an idea of what their daily routines and lives are, I am not gaining much from this experience other than some remarkably beautiful pictures. For this reason, I hope to meet the locals and to find out their favorite, yet secret, restaurants that the other tourists don’t know about. I hope to really connect to the people there, and with this class I have no doubt I will be able to push myself in that way. The quote, “All journeys have secret destinations of which the traveler is unaware” by Martin Buber really embodies what I think of when I imagine departing for my trip. I know that this journey is going to be filled with plenty of moments that I would have never dreamed to experience. What I am most excited for are the secret destinations and the other unknown moments that I have yet to encounter but will experience while studying in the French Riviera. Even further, I am excited to be able to return and share the secret destinations that I am at that point, aware of.