Vamos a Espana

Centennial students spent a week exploring Spain


Centennial Spanish students in front of a castle in Segovia. Credit: Jolie Janson

Kaleb Bang, Staff Writer

To kick off March, 14 students embarked on a life-changing trip to Valladolid, Spain as part of the Centennial Spanish Exchange program. They’re back from their 10-day experience, and during their stay, they had the privilege of visiting cool cities and buildings, eating unique food, and embracing a whole new culture.

Some of the activities that the group enjoyed include tours of Segovia, Salamanca, Valladolid, Toledo, and Madrid. In these cities, they saw cathedrals, mountains, synagogues, the King’s palace, and different parts of the city as a whole. They also participated in a Flamenco dance class and visited a farm with bulls and horses. There were also days where they would go to to the discos and there was a day where the students got to dress up and experience Festival at night.

I sat down with seniors, Jolie Janson and Alex Harvil and asked about their experience. When asked how they would rank their experience on a scale from 1-10, Jolie responded with “infinity” and Alex responded with “1 million.” Clearly, they both fell in love with the European country.

I also asked about the differences between Georgia and Spain. Jolie said, “It is beautiful. The architecture is historic and more rustic. The weather was also amazing every day.”

As far as schooling, Alex said,”The school system is different. There is one school that has grades from pre-K all the way up to senior year. Each floor has different ages, and instead of class changes, the teacher moves to different classes. Also, their school offers a literature and science pathway.”

For Jolie and Alex, they both had a blast participating in all the activities. Jolie said that her favorite moment was when they went to Toledo, a city right outside of Madrid. “We spent all day there and toured a really beautiful cathedral, and we saw mountain valleys and rivers,” she said, and added, “The geography was breathtaking.”

Alex said that her favorite moment was when “all of us were with our Spanish students and we hung out around Valladolid and hung out in a pizza parlor and walked around the streets and sang songs.”

About the food: they ate and drank multiple foods and beverages including tapas, chorizo, churros con chocolate, calamari, la tortilla, coffee, pastries, and paella. Both Jolie and Alex fell in love with the culture. The food, the language, the atmosphere, and the people all factored in to what they say is the best trip ever, and they hope that it is not their last time going to Spain.