Abroad in Oxford: Getting to getting there

Northern Virginia bound!

Hi, everybody. I’m Josh, and I’ll be writing about my experiences abroad for the next couple of weeks. Currently, I am writing from an Amtrak train that just left Newport News and is headed to Alexandria. Tomorrow, a group of 20 CNU students (including me) and two professors will depart from Dulles and land in London. From there, we’ll spend two weeks taking a class at the University of Oxford and doing some independent research and exploring. I am absolutely stoked right now.

This trip was one of the main reasons I decided to come to CNU; it’s an opportunity I did not find at any of the other schools to which I applied. Dr. Lori Underwood, my scholarship program director, let me know of this opportunity while I was interviewing for admission in March of 2012. Once I was accepted and chose to enroll, I’ve been looking forward to this trip. For me to be going on this trip, I had to maintain a specific GPA and then do a little extra homework over this summer–just  an absurdly thick packet of readings, some online quizzes, a paper, and some more reading and one more assignment that I plan to do for the rest of the train ride. In the end, not a big deal because the actual work will come at Oxford. But I’ll worry about that once I’m there.

I’ll get to more specifics about the trip, where I’m going, what I’m doing, my big project proposal to help the world, and whatever adventures we have, throughout the two weeks abroad. But since I don’t have a little biography anywhere on the blog or the CNU website, here’s a bit about me. I’m a junior from Chesapeake, Virginia. I’m an English and communication double major, and I work for the Captain’s Log and tutor in the Writing Center. This summer, I’m also interning for CNU’s Office of Communication and Public Relations, writing stories, profiles, and this blog for the school’s website and various publications. While I thoroughly enjoy everything I do at CNU, it’ll be nice to get a change of pace and scenery.

One of the main things that excites me is honestly the weather; it’ll be cooler in England, cool enough for hoodies and jeans in the evening. Then, of course, there’s the library and gardens at Oxford, the city and countryside to explore, American Independence Day to celebrate, and the U.S. soccer team to watch in the World Cup  among bitter English fans. And the pure excitement of being in a new place and experiencing a new culture.

I’m only about 100 miles from home (that’s a total estimate–I have no idea where this train is now), and only a few thousand miles away from Oxford. In terms of distance, it’s still far. But after more than two years of anticipation, I can’t believe how close it is.

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