Allison O’Brien’s Time Abroad During May Term, Summer and Fall 2022

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  • Senior Allison O’Brien in Cairo, Egypt in November 2022 as part of her year abroad. O’Brien spent 2022 traveling across six continents and visiting 16 countries. She participated in a May Term travel course as well as completed a study abroad program. “The opportunities I had at Bridgewater made all of this possible,” said O’Brien.

  • O’Brien participated in the 2022 May Term marine ecology course starting in Quito, Ecuador. “It was so much fun exploring this city, trying all the amazing food and getting to stand on the equator,” said O’Brien. “I had a great time in Ecuador and would love to go back again.”

  • The second part of the 2022 May Term in Ecuador was visiting the Galápagos. O’Brien is standing at the summit of a volcano during a hike the group took. They also participated in snorkeling and visiting wildlife parks as part of the course.

  • During the summer of 2022, O’Brien participated in the National Science Foundation International Research Experience students program in Australia. “I lived in Australia for 3 months, mainly in Queensland, during a research experience with two other Bridgewater students,” said O’Brien. “Sydney is probably my favorite city in the world. I fell in love with Australia, and especially Sydney.”

  • During the fall of 2022, O’Brien completed a semester abroad at the University of Nicosia in Cyprus. She was able to visit Paphos, Cyprus in December 2022. “Paphos is a beautiful city on the beach with lots to do including swimming, shopping and exploring ancient temple ruins like these,” said O’Brien.

  • In September, O’Brien visited Pisa, Italy during her time studying abroad. “On this particular solo trip, I went to Pisa,” said O’Brien. “I walked all around the city, stopping at the major sites, like the Leaning Tower of Pisa.”

  • During another trip while studying abroad, O’Brien visited Florence, Italy in October 2022. “One of my other times going to Italy was visiting Florence and the Tuscany region,” said O’Brien. “It was such a lovely and beautiful city, but it was very busy and crowded.”

  • In October, O’Brien and others she met during her study abroad experience traveled to Palestine. “I went to Jerusalem and Tel Aviv with 15 other people in my study abroad program for a few days,” said O’Brien. “We had such a great time walking around, going to the beach, shopping and eating all of the amazing food. It was incredible to walk around the old city of Jerusalem and visit all of the holy sites.”

  • Another excursion that O’Brien took was to Spain in October 2022. “I went on a weekend trip to Ibiza, Barcelona and Madrid,” said O’Brien. “Spain is such a beautiful and vibrant country with amazing food.”

  • During a weekend in November, O’Brien traveled to Egypt. “Obviously, the highlight was getting to visit the great pyramids of Giza; it did not feel real,” said O’Brien. “I also went on a city tour of Cairo, going to Egyptian museums and local shops.”

  • O’Brien spent time in Northern Ireland in November 2022 as well. “During my study abroad, I visited my friend who lives in Northern Ireland for a week,” said O’Brien.

  • While in Northern Ireland, O’Brien was able to visit many places, including the Giant’s Causeway, Saint Patrick’s grave, Inch Abbey and a Stonehenge circle. “Ireland and Northern Ireland are so beautiful and green,” said O’Brien. “This was a fantastic week.”

  • In November 2022, O’Brien traveled to Sofia, Bulgaria. “I traveled by myself to Bulgaria and had the most amazing time. Sofia is a really cool city to walk around, and I am glad to have gone there,” said O’Brien. “On Thanksgiving Day I went on a group tour to the Rila Monastery, about a 3-hour bus ride away from Sofia, secluded in the mountains.”

  • As another excursion during her time studying abroad, O’Brien took a trip to Paris, France. “I visited my friend living in France for a weekend away in Paris,” said O’Brien. “I did all of the touristy things, like the Louvre, Eiffel Tower and catacombs.”

  • During another excursion in November 2022, O’Brien traveled to Porto, Portugal. “I went to Portugal by myself and had the best time ever despite the rain,” said O’Brien. “It is the prettiest place I have been and quickly became my favorite European city. The food, the colors, the water, the buildings, the prices – everything was so great.”

  • In December 2022, O’Brien spent time in Budapest, Hungary. “I spent a few days before Christmas in Budapest. It was such a lovely, modern city with charm,” said O’Brien. “I had a fantastic time despite all of the rain. My favorite part was going to all of the famous Christmas markets.”

  • O’Brien lived in Cyprus for a semester as part of her study abroad program, but also spent time exploring other countries. “I loved living in Cyprus and had so much fun visiting all of the beautiful coastline and beaches,” said O’Brien. “In Greek mythology, the goddess Aphrodite is from Cyprus. This is a picture of me at Aphrodite’s Rock, the birthplace of love and beauty.”

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