When Dr. Prud’homme presented me with the opportunity to go to Oxford, I was admittedly a bit intimidated. We would be spending a good deal of time at the premier academic institution in the world. But I simply felt that the opportunity was too good to pass up, and I took the plunge and went.
My gut led me in the right direction. I had the time of my life. Oxford is a very endearing city with so much to see and explore. Even in two weeks I was unable to fully get a grip on everything the city and university had to offer.
I went a little scared of what to expect academically, but it was a great experience which made me realize the kind of work I am capable of doing.
We spent two weeks studying topics such as Islam and how it relates to cultures around the world, Christianity and the media, and so on—and we did so with some of the most prominent scholars in their area. Although the seminars were intense, they were also gripping, drawing you into the material and making you want more.
Perhaps the best part about the trip, though, was our incomparable access to the Bodleian library of the University of Oxford—the largest, and most beautiful library in the world. Indeed, the Bodleian is actually an entire series of libraries, and they are the most comprehensive collections in the world. Using the amazing resources of the library we were able to write a paper on a topic of our choice.
To further assist us we had tutorials during our time at Oxford, affording us one-on-one meetings with tremendously knowledgeable scholars from Oxford University in the area of our choice. This was a great help to all of us. It especially helped me to narrow the scope of my topic for my senior thesis and directed me to many new sources. It also created connections in Oxford with scholars who were more than willing to offer their help to us in the future, whatever we might need.
All in all, I would highly recommend this two-week experience to anyone who wants to challenge themselves academically, while also have fun seeing and being a part of a beautiful, vibrant city and University. Professor Prud’homme, who is the director of the Oxford program, will be holding an informational session next week about the 2012 program on Sept. 21 at 5:30pm in Goldstein 100.
I strongly encourage you to learn more, and to be a part of Oxford! For more information please attend the information session or contact Professor Prud’homme at firstname.lastname@example.org or me at email@example.com.