First Impressions: SFS Tanzania

Posted: September 20, 2012

Name: Brigitta Rongstad
School: University of Wisconsin-Madison
Major: Geology
Program: Wildlife Management Studies, Tanzania


Why did you choose to study abroad with SFS?

SFS offered programs with a lot of field and hands-on experience that you can’t get sitting in a classroom.  The Kenya & Tanzania program was particularly interesting because it is in a part of the world I may never get to visit again.

What are your first impressions of the country?
Tanzania is beautiful. Being located near/on the edge of the Rift Valley is an amazing landscape not only because of the local people and wildlife, but also because of the geology (volcanoes, mountains, lakes, etc.).

What are your first impressions of the field station?
The field station is very nice. We have enough space to play volleyball, shoot arrows, watch movies, study, and relax. The bandas are tight, but with all the beautiful scenery we have no reason to stay cooped up in them. The most surprising and awesome thing about the field station: HOT WATER!

What do you think the biggest challenge will be for you this semester both academically and culturally?
Learning another language, Swahili, will definitely be the biggest challenge for me. I want to do well in the Swahili & culture class, btu I’m more worried about being able to communicate with the locals. On an unrelated note: it will also be a challenge to keep my pasty skin from burning to a crisp in the equatorial African sun.

What are you looking forward to the most about the semester?
I am beyond excited for our field days, especially for our five day trip to Serengeti National Park. If I had the choice, every class would take place on trips like this!

Give three words that best describe how you are feeling right now.
Excited, anxious, welcomed