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SEEING WITH NEW EYES

THE BENEFITS & VALUE of a COLLEGE STUDY ABROAD EXPERIENCE


ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS The University of Tennessee- Knoxville College of Agriculture and Natural Resources - Plant Sciences College of Architecture and Design - Landscape Architecture Program Book Contributors + Design Garry Menendez, Associate Professor Plant Sciences Angelike G. Angelopoulos, MLA Graduate Assistant

Front cover image: Garry Menendez Back cover image: Angelike Angelopoulos


SEEING WITH NEW EYES

THE BENEFITS and VALUE of a COLLEGE STUDY ABROAD EXPERIENCE

Image: Garry Menendez


Image: Clay Lezon


INTRODUCTION It would be hard to argue the value of a great education. Likewise, few could discount the benefits of experiencing the new sights, sounds, and tastes that come with traveling to a foreign land. The goal of a progressive and competitive college or university should be to offer its students all of the above. In the Department of Plant Sciences at The University of Tennessee there exists opportunities to achieve such goals through a highly successful and enriching study abroad program. To spread universal knowledge and help students become more prepared and competitive in the global market a program must allow students to stretch beyond their physical boundaries and comfort zones. There is no substitute for firsthand experiences when it comes to providing an appreciation for different people and places. It has been said “Travel is the only thing you buy that makes you richer”. There is little discussion concerning where a student’s resources must be invested (tuition, food, rent, and books). To advise a student to reallocate existing financing or just find additional funding to participate in a study abroad experience takes faith, trust and a solid history of performance. But a sample testimonial received following such an adventure shows support for this type of investment: “This trip was truly an investment because I gained so much from it. It has been said that you remember events more than the physical things you receive or have. Therefore my trip to Italy was money well spent because this is surely a trip I’ll never forget!” Nina Ash - Italy 2013


S T U D Y A B R O A D | BACKGROUND Beginning in 2005 Associate Professor Garry Menendez, a landscape architect in the Department of Plant Sciences, has been annually exploring the globe with students via a program entitled “The Glorious Gardens of….” The blank being representing the name of the country or countries visited. The time frame typically takes place during the university’s spring “Mini-Term” falling between spring and summer semesters. Participants learn about the opportunity and apply during the fall semester and then commit to the program and begin preparing for the experience in the spring prior to departing the US in May. A typical group size is between 15 and 20 participants with roughly 50% declaring themselves landscape design or landscape architecture majors and the remaining coming from a diverse array of majors.


“

To travel is to take a journey into yourself. -Martin Buber

�

This three-hour credit course requires the students research and write about the sites to be visited prior to departure. The resulting materials are packaged into a travel binder and given to each traveler. Requirements while abroad include keeping a daily journal documenting experiences and comparisons with their own culture. While sketching and graphic representation are not required skills to participate, many students do enhance their journals with art and visual representation. In addition each student is required to photograph their journey and submit 10 high quality images upon return to the US. Final requirements of the course included a written summary of the trip and an informative paper describing how the experience may affect their major or career path. Each study abroad adventure culminates with reunion dinner in the fall during which time the results of the photo contest are announced. Many of those images have been included in this publication.


France Holland

LOCATIONS FOR TRAVEL ABROAD Portugal Image: Sarah Howard

Ireland Image: Lauren Caylor

Image: Garry Menendez

Image: Garry Menendez

England Italy

Spain

Image: Clay Lezon

Image: Garry Menendez

Image: Garry Menendez


Images: Garry Menendez


Now that the trip is over, I wish I could go back! A truly amazing two weeks. -Christine Biermann

ITALY ITINERARY Italy (2009, 2013) The Route

Rome | Tivoli | Florence | Versilla | Lake Maggiore | Verona | Venice


Image: Blake Price

Image: Lindsey Bradley

Image: Garry Menendez

S IT E S + ATT RAC T ION S Villa Adrianna Villa Lante Parco Dei Mostri Villa Medici Fiesole

Boboli Gardens Bardini Gardens Villa Gamberaia Villa Garzoni Pisa Cinque Terre Villa Taranto

Isola Madre Venice Landmarks Isola Bella Castello Vichiomaggio Isola dei Pescatori Villa Carlotta Villa Serbelloni Sirmione Verona


SITE S + ATTR AC T I ON S

IRELAND + ENGLAND

The Cliffs of Moher The Burren Ring of Kerry Ilnacullen Bantry House Lakemount Garden Ballymaloe Garden Kilmokea Garden Kilkenny Castle Glendalough Powerscourt Kilruddery St. Patrick’s Cathedral

Christ Church Cathedral Hellen Dillon Garden Bodnant Garden Biddulph Grange Stowe Gardens Hidcote Manor Blenheim Palace Bath Landmarks Blenheim Palace Hampton Court Kew Botanic Gardens Chelsea Flower Show London Landmarks


Image: Brianna Chen

ITINERARY

Image: Payton Watson

Image: Sarah Decker

Image: Garry Menendez

Image: Garry Menendez

Ireland + England (2010) The Route

Shannon | Killarney | Cork | Kilkenny | Dublin | Chester, England | Stratford Upon Avon | Oxford | Bath | London


The memories and experiences of this trip will last forever!” It has truly been a once in a lifetime opportunity! -Alex Rogers

FRANCE + HOLLAND ITINERARY

France + Holland (2011) The Route

Amsterdam | Leiden | Arnhem | Paris | Tours | Avignon | Menton | Eze | Juan le Pins | Nice


Image: Hannah Gosnell

Image: Clint Wayman

SITES + ATTRACTIONS

Image: Garry Menendez

Keukenhof Gardens of Appeltern Piet Oudolf Garden Alsmeer Flower Auction Paris Landmarks Giverny

Image: Sarah Wayman

Chateau de Chantilly Chateau de Rivau Chaumont Avignon Chateau Val Joanis Le Clos du Peyronnet Palais Carnoles

Le Jardin Exotique d’Eze Villa Ephrussi de Parc Floral Phoenix


SITES + ATT R AC T I ON S

SPAIN + PORTUGAL

Jardi Botanic Marimurta Sagrada Familia Casa Batllo Parque Guell Montjuic Parc Monasterio de Piedra Madrid Landmarks La Granja Great Mosque of Cordoba Carmen de los Martires Alhambra

Royal Alcazar Palace Parque de Maria Luisa Plaza de Espana Jardines del Guadalquivir Capela de Ossos Torre das Tres Coroas Oceanario de Lisboa Jardim Botanico Gulbenkian Garden Pena Park Gardens of Queluz

Image: Angelike Angelopoulos


Image: Garry Menendez

Image: Juan Mendez

ITINERARY

Image: Sarah Howard

Image: Angelike Angelopoulos

Image: Angelike Angelopoulos

Spain + Portugal (2012) The Route

Barcelona | Zaragoza | Madrid | Segovia | Toledo | Cordoba | Granada | Sevilla | Estremoz | Lisbon | Sintra


Image: Garry Menendez

Image: Clint Wayman

Image: Garry Menendez

Image: Garry Menendez

Image: Alex Rogers

Image: Angelike Angelopoulos


While the title of the course contains the words “The Glorious Gardens of….”, it is difficult to separate the encountered landscapes from the structures that rest upon them. The course often attracts students of architecture, art, and interior design, along with several from engineering. The conversations that take place on a coach full of students from mixed academic backgrounds are engaging for all.

GARDENS

Approximately half of the participants on these garden tours are from areas very unrelated to landscape design and landscape architecture. Inevitably it is heard near the conclusion of every journey from one of these students “I didn’t realize there was so much involved in the design and studying of a garden”. Or, “I’ll never look at plants and outdoor spaces the same way again”. Being exposed to not only new countries but also new professions can only enrich the college learning experience. Image: Angelike Angelopoulos


Image: Angelike Angelopoulos

ARCHITECTURE


Image: Angelike Angelopoulos

Image: Angelike Angelpoulos

Image: Garry Menendez

Image: Garry Menendez

Architectural creations by world famous designers encountered in person sometimes leave the student studying such somewhat star-struck with moments of disbelief that they are actually standing beneath the Arch de Triumph or the Aqueduct of Segovia. There is a lasting impact when a students sees the play of light and shadow on a world famous structure often prompting them to return to view it once more at another time of day or night.


Image: Matt Price

Image: Garry Menendez

Image: Garry Menendez

Image: Julie Jones


To watch the evening news one might assume that the only place events occur are in the United States and Middle East. What affects Americans is always given top billing and the majority of airtime. But when a student sees a demonstration railing against austerity measures in Madrid, for instance, they quickly find themselves free of the cultural insulation they assume would always surround them. A challenge which is sometimes brought up by students studying abroad on a formal tour is at times they feel somewhat separated from the “real” inhabitants of the host country. No doubt language barriers have much to do with not being able to fully engage with the locals. While fluency in the visited countries’ language is not a requirement prior to participating, students are given and encouraged to study some basic survival phrases to assist in becoming more comfortable with social interactions. An experience that is often observed in the journals upon returning is when a student has a successful exchange with a vendor or server in the host country’s language. A genuine sense of accomplishment leaves the student feeling hungry for more success.

CULTURE

Image: Julie Jones


SKETCHES Sketch: Brad Collett

Being able to record ones thoughts and translate a particular scene into a graphic form can prove challenging, especially if a student has not yet been asked to assemble such a product. Journals collected by the professor have displayed a wide array of refinement. One of the most encountered observations is the challenge for a student new to sketching to edit what they see, visually “flatten� a view (breaking down the scene into its simplest shapes and forms), and accurately record proportion.


Most students and adults alike have a reluctance to draw anything for fear of what others might think. Sadly creativity is driven out of most as they go through the process of gaining an education. Ask, “how many of you are artists?� in a kindergarten classroom and most every hand will be raised. Pose this same question in middle and high school settings and the number of raised hands goes down dramatically to near zero.

Sketch: Garry Menendez

Sketch: Garry Menendez


Sketch: Clay Lezon

S K E TC H E S

Sketch: Garry Menendez

Sketch: Xi Wang

Sketch: Xi Wang


Sketch: Cameron Rodman

Sketch: Clay Lezon

Sketch: Liz Ball

A sketch is a visual recording of shapes and shadows. By drawing simple objects but doing so quickly and loosely many are able to overcome the fear of gaining approval and are instilled with a self-confidence necessary to tackle more complex scenes.


Image: Myles Smith

HISTORY


One of the comments most heard of students getting their first view of another country is how impressed and even awed they are by the age of the sites and structures they encounter. From 5000 year old Newgrange Neolithic site in Ireland to the nearly 2000 year old Roman Coliseum, study abroad students often try to integrate these historical timelines with those with which they are most familiar. Another noted observation is the relationship between history and art. Strolling through the Louvre in Paris quickly brings one in touch with a much more tangible timeline than reading the dates of when art was created in a classroom setting.

Images: Garry Menendez


Image: Garry Menendez


TESTIMONIALS

Image: Angelike Angelopoulos


“This trip has truly changed my perception of the world. All my life, I’ve seen other parts of the world in movies, read about them in books, and dreamed about seeing them myself. Actually having the chance to do that: it was better then I imagined. I met a ton of new and interesting people and saw amazing places. I really got the know the cities we stayed in and the locals were some of the friendliest people I’ve ever met. This experience has been incredible and I can’t wait to go next year!” HG – 2010 Ireland & England “This trip has impacted me and my life in such a positive way and I’m sure over the course of time that will set in more and become more clear but for now I had a blast.” GM – 09 Italy “ I am so thankful to have had the opportunity to go on The Glorious Gardens of Italy tour. It was truly the experience of a lifetime. This trip meant so much to me. It was the trip where I was able to grow and discover myself as well as better understand my own culture. Being immersed in another culture is truly an eye opening experience that has helped shape my outlook on life.” RG – Italy 13


Study Abroad Contacts and Links: Garry Menendez Associate Professor Plant Sciences & Landscape Design 2431 Joe Johnson Dr. University of Tennessee-Knoxville Knoxville, TN 37996-4561 Phone: (865) 974-0216 Email: menendez@utk.edu website: http://itc2.utk.edu/web/gardensofeurope/default.html Programs Abroad Office 1620 Melrose Avenue Knoxville, TN 37996-3531 Phone: (865) 974-3177 Fax: (865) 974-2985 Email: studyabroad@utk.edu website: https://studyabroad.utk.edu/


THE UNIVERSITY OF TENNESSEE, KNOXVILLE

LANDSCAPE ARCHITECTURE www.archdesign.utk.edu

1715 Volunteer Blvd. Knoxville, TN 37996

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Seeing With New Eyes: The Benefits & Value of a College Study Abroad Experience  

The University of Tennessee-Knoxville | A catalog of study abroad experiences led by Associate Professor Garry Menendez, together with the L...

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