One of our most popular programs, Equine Studies in Scotland, is currently underway in Edinburgh, Scotland. Hear from Rachel, one of this year’s Equine students abroad as she reflects on life in Scotland and her experience in the program so far.
Waking up to baby sheep playing in the field, the horses waiting to come in for the morning, and the birds chirping outside the window still doesn’t feel real. We have been here in Edinburgh, Scotland for two and a half weeks so far, with just ten days left until we leave to be stateside again. Even in this short time, we are still adjusting to the time schedule. With Jordan being from Kentucky and me being from Georgia, Scotland is 5 hours ahead of home for the both of us. Food, sleep, even talking to our family has been a very big change due to the fact that most of our college friends are only waking up when we are about to finish our classes for the day! This adventure has definitely been one for the books!
Being a horse back rider, obviously riding was a big part of why my best friend Jordan and I chose this program. Getting to ride at the Scotland International Equestrian Center has been amazing with our trainers Sam and Liz, as well as the numerous horses we ride each day. Classes here are equally engaging, as we get full hands on experience doing things like labeling the anatomy, watching fitness training, and even equine massage techniques. We also had the privilege of meeting some of the students that go to this college as well, which was a HUGE culture shock. Yes, we are all in college, but we were on average about 2 years older than most of them. At home, we would be considered the young ones, here they start early and finish even earlier. It was nice though, having them here to explain to us what all the Scottish phrases meant!
Aside from actually being on campus, we have traveled to many historic places in Scotland including Loch Lomond (home of the “Paramount Mountain” otherwise known as Ben Lomond), the Highlands, Perth Races Gold Cup, and countless castles. We plan to journey to Loch Ness this weekend to see the place where the myths began, and possibly get a glimpse of the famous Loch Ness Monsters for ourselves;) We will also get to explore the ruins of the 500 year old Urquhart castle. If there was one thing that I could bring home to the States with me so far, it would definitely have to be one of the Highland Cows, or as they are traditionally called, Hairy Coos (although my dad is dead set on having me bring home a kilt for him to wear, no mom, I wont put you through that). Oh well… he will have to settle for a coffee mug.
Is it really almost time to go home?
– Rachel C.
Interested in participating in this amazing program next year? Check out all the details here for our Equine Studies in Scotland study abroad program. As an alternative, we also offer veterinary studies for six weeks in Scotland as well!