Nicholas Fox ’20 — As a student pursuing a pre-medical degree, many individuals find it difficult to study abroad and assume they are unable to due to rigid course requirements and a general lack of course fulfilling programs. Despite these assumptions, I have been able to participate in an immersive global health program in Lima, Peru and most recently spent my summer at the Harlaxton Manor in Grantham, England. Both of these opportunities have been provided to me by Wabash College and more recently through the Rudolph Scholarship. The Rudolph Scholarship alleviated the financial burden that originally was hindering my ability to study in a foreign country. Because of this scholarship I was able to study abroad and take a Public Health and Virus course with Professor Bost, a Biology Professor here at Wabash College.
Through this class, I visited the pub that Watston and Crick would meet at while they were experimenting with and constructing the 3D model for DNA. Additionally, I was able to visit numerous museums in London allowing me to physically see Watson and Crick’s model of the DNA double helix as well as the Natural History Museum, home to a large collection of Darwin’s specimens. While attending class at Harlaxton, during the week there were field trips to different cities in England. Because of these trips I was able to visit places like Leicester, Empingham, London, Nottingham and Cambridge. In each city I could visit local museums, famous pubs, and experience the local culture. As an example, my classmates and I punted on the canals that surround the famous universities of Cambridge and Oxford. Similarly, while in Nottingham, or the “City of Caves”, I went into the caves that expand under the city. The sandstone caves were used as a place to tan leather in medieval times, as a place for secret meetings in times of rebellion, as air raid shelters during the Second World War, and for a variety of other uses since they were built in the 17th century.
When I decided to go abroad, I knew I would be stepping out of my comfort zone. With things ranging from not knowing anybody at the university to traveling to countries where I do not know the native language or being exposed to new and foreign cultures, these were all new to me. However, they were the exact obstacles that I wanted to confront while I was abroad. In doing so, I grew as a person, educated myself in new ways and prepared for my future.
The close proximity of the countries in Europe allowed me to get everything I could out of my six weeks abroad. I traveled to Hungary, Spain, France, Scotland, and Italy. Each country offered unique excursions and historical monuments and locations to visit. While in Spain I spent time at the Basílica de la Sagrada Família, a massive unfinished Roman Catholic church that has been under construction for almost 140 years. Afterward, I saw other famous landmarks designed by Antoni Gaudí such as the Casa Milà La Pedrerà and Park Güell. Scotland, however, was one of my favorite places that I was able to visit while I was in Europe. The landscape was beautiful and the food was delicious. While I was there I visited the Edinburgh Castle, an important stronghold in the struggle for power in the United Kingdom during the 15th century, I went to the coast to
see the retired Royal Yacht Britannia, but my favorite place was Arthur’s Seat. Arthur’s Seat is atop an 800-foot hill right outside the city of Edinburgh. The panoramic view of the city was breathtaking and watching the sun set over the city is an image I will never forget.
My last week abroad was spent in the historical city of Rome. I was able to tour around the Pantheon, the Roman Forum, Circus Maximus, II Vittoriano, the Trevi fountain, the Colosseum and St. Peter’s Basilica. The most memorable part of my time in Italy was seeing the Pope talk on Sunday morning while I was in Vatican City. With all these experiences behind me, my appreciation for Wabash College has deepened as it has expanded my global perspective, enhanced my cultural appreciation, and allowed me to see the world.