Dr. James Tanoos recently finished up a Study Abroad to Prague, Czech Republic with 30 students from Purdue University, USA. The trip was entitled “Purdue Polytechnic’s Central European Multinational Automobile Organization Supply Chain Experience”. Hearing from Dr. Tanoos, the students loved the beautiful city of Prague and thanks to his comprehensive report at his blog, today we get to share in some of that experience.
Note that the following are quick little snippets of what he wrote about the students experience. We encourage you to read more at Dr. James Tanoos blog, here.
First of all, they obviously learned some facts about the Czech Republic!
The students learned about and participated in multinational automobile and supply chain tours. Did you know that the economic rise of the Czech Republic has been led by the automobile industry? It has and the students explored the massive Škoda Auto factory.
James created a great write up of the facility and the experience at his blog. Click here to read it.
Additionally, the students got to visit the campus of Purdue partner institution Czech Technical University.
They had the opportunity to learn from demonstrations by Dr. Pavel Burget, who is the Head of the Czech Technical University’s Industrial Automation Group. The students learned about their robotics initiatives and their collaborations with multinational organizations such as Škoda.
While on campus, the Purdue students also visited the National Library of Technology. This is where the students go to study and research. The USA students were able to listen to a lecture about the integration of technology into the curriculum. One surprising thing they noticed was that their Czech peers, (the Czech students) were allowed to drink alcohol freely in the library. (Beer… it’s a Czech thing!)
Of course, such a trip also offers ample opportunity for cultural excursions and immersion. The students were able to view the original Munich Agreement and learned about the Velvet Revolution. Many people do not know that it was the students who were the ones who took active roles in shaping Prague and the Czech Republic.
The students were able to spend a lot of social time at St. Wenceslas Square, the historic center of Prague and a World Heritage Site, which was first established in 1348 as a horse market.
It was perhaps more special to them since they fully understood that the square has been the epicenter of all the major political protests, speeches, and demonstrations over the years, from the Proclamation of Independence in 1918 to events in the German occupation, to communism, and now capitalism.
They visited the Politických vězňů (Political Prisoners’ Street), which commemorates the brave citizens who were imprisoned for their political beliefs, in most cases under communist rule and stopped by the Museum of Communism, which provides an overview of the recent history of political freedoms in the Czech Republic.
There are many more photos and information about their experience if you click here.
Of course no visit to Prague is complete without walking across the Charles Bridge.
It was interesting to read a non-Czechs experience, especially through the eyes of a teacher and students who were visiting as part of a school excursion. Dr. Tanoos shares some interesting insights into the various places visited, the hotel rooms, student cultural differences and so forth. They even shared some moments with Czech soccer team members from Slavia and took in a game!
The students also had the opportunity to tour the American Center at the Embassy and learn more about the role of US diplomats living in the Czech Republic.
They learned about the history of trade and capitalism as well as the rick history of the city of Prague itself. Dr. Tanoos discusses his thoughts on the Czech Republic one of the fastest-growing economies in the EU today and how historically, how the Bohemian lands were one of the most affluent in the world before communism.
Nightlife experiences included a few bars and some karaoke and of course, no Czech excursion is complete without group dinners which included the rich and tasty Czech food.
Once again, we encourage you to learn about their insights and experience – plus there are many more wonderful photos at Dr. James Tanoos blog, here.
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