Senora Ossman's Spanish experiences

Photos courtesy of Danielle Ossman

By Maddy Moloney       
 In-Depth Editor
The standard souvenir from Spain consists of a Spanish flag or Spanish candy, but not  for Spanish teacher Danielle Ossman. On one of Ossman’s trips to study abroad Spain during college she brought home what she calls her “best souvenir”, her husband. Ossman’s husband, was in the same study abroad program from the University of Illinois as Ossman.

Ossman has traveled to Spain every year since she studied abroad in college, a total of six times.

“I know the streets of Barcalona better than I know the streets of Chicago,” Ossman said.

Ossman plans to go back to Spain twice this year. Once with the Spain exchange program at Prospect then again to complete the third year of her second masters degree in Spanish though a program from California State University.

The program consists of studying abroad in Guatemala, Peru and Spain over the coarse of three summers for six weeks. Ossman spent four weeks taking classes on Spanish linguistics,culture and literature which she believes helps her become a better teacher.

“I think that I understand it better, I also think I understand the little things about the language so that I can explain it better. It makes me more talkative, so I’m more willing to try new things and I get to see a lot more different cultural places and in the book we talk about to many different places and now that I have been to a lot of them I have a lot of authentic things to share with my kids.”

For the last two weeks of the program Ossman is able to explore the countries.
While in Guatemala, Ossman got the opportunity to visit coffee plantations as well as to go zip lining.

“[Zip lining] was awesome. It was kind of scary because its just this little cable and your going across this giant canyon. It was really cool and a good adrealine rush.”

While in Peru Ossman experienced both winter and summer within the coarse of one week.

“It was really different. In one part of the country  were going hiking in the mountains at high  altitudes and its freezing and then the next week we are in the desert. It was just different to see all these different parts to one  big country. So I felt like I got a really good picture of everything in the country.”

Despite the wide range of weather Ossman still had to abide by the airport’s packing limits.  She was limited to a small carry on and a camping back pack filled with layers upon layers of Underarmer.

This summer when Ossman returns to Spain she plans on accomplising one of the fews things she has never gotten the chance to do in Spain; watch the running of the bulls.

“My husband says I’m not allowed to run in it.”