Shaynia Myers – Psychology & Sociology – Level 1
I was attracted to this trip as I haven’t had much experience in other countries and I felt that I could learn a lot from this short trip. I do not usually like to take part in these sorts of trips but I am glad that I decided to apply. We were given plenty of information and the staff were very helpful. We received the scheduled timetable before we set off for the trip so we were fully aware what we were doing which was very comforting if you do not tend to step out of your comfort zone. I was excited to see how different education styles in another country was and to see the psychological/sociological sites in Italy to broaden my knowledge.
MONDAY We did not have anything scheduled for Monday as we landed in Venice rather late. But once settled into our rooms, we headed out to dinner as a whole group as it was our first night and we wished to get to know one another. After dinner we explored the area together to grasp a sense of where we were.
TUESDAY Our first lecture was with Professor Stefano Campostrini who spoke about health inequalities in Italy which was very interesting to hear, for example, we were given the history of health equalities in Italy. I was able to take down some valuable notes and since it was a small group we were able to interact more so it was more like a lecture and a seminar tied into one. In the afternoon it was scheduled for the group to go to San Servolo for a guided tour of the mental asylum museum.
Personally, one of the most interesting parts was near the end of the tour where there were before and after pictures of the patients at the hospital, some of the patients did not look much different however some of the other patients changed drastically looking worse than before they were checked in. This was one of my favourite parts of the trip as I felt it tied in really nicely with the lecture we had earlier on that day, it gave us a sense on how real the inequalities were in Italy especially seeing that there were separate asylums depending on your wealth at that time. We then had the rest of the day to ourselves where myself and a few others decided to head back to San Marco Square to explore and then got the longest Vaporetto back to where our hotel is so we can take in the beautiful sights.
WEDNESDAY We were lucky enough to receive the whole day to do as we wish. Myself and a few others decided to go on a tour of the three surrounding islands of Venice: Murrano, Burrano and Torcello. Our first stop was Murrano which was where we got to see how Murrano glass was made. We then went on to explore the other two islands. After the tour we explored the area to gain cultural insight then afterwards we went on to visit the Saint Mark’s Basilica which was very beautiful and peaceful.
THURSDAY On the Thursday we were given a lecture by Dr Marta Pantalone about social care services in Italy and went on to discuss the lecture afterwards. This was then followed by another lecture which was given by Dr Marion Ellison on social community planning in Italy and Scotland. It was intriguing to hear the contrast between Italy and Scotland. After the lecture we discussed the previous lectures as a group, it was helpful to hear everybody else’s opinion on the matters. I really enjoyed Ca’ Foscari University. It had a similar teaching style to Queen Margaret University which was easy to understand. I managed to catch helpful notes which will help in the future.
FRIDAY The day we flew back to Edinburgh.
On the whole, I really enjoyed this trip, it was very educational and the timetable wasn’t too crammed, it was a perfect pace which gave us time to reflect on what we have learned for the next lecture. I feel like it has definitely boosted my confidence and has enhanced my knowledge on these subjects which I can use for future essays and dissertations. I am thankful for this experience which I thought I would never have. It is a fantastic opportunity for people who aren’t fortunate enough to study abroad or haven’t had a lot experiences in different countries and to boost their confidence and education. I have definitely benefited from this trip in more than one way which I am grateful for.