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Community Gathers in Howe Library to Celebrate Study Abroad Photo Contest Winners

Date: 
Friday, November 17, 2023

Members of the UVM community gathered on November 13 in Howe Library to celebrate the School of World Languages and Cultures’ (SWLC) inaugural study abroad photo contest six winners. The exhibit, titled “Languages & Cultures Abroad: Catamounts Around the World,” displays six photos, each chosen for one of three categories: Everyday Life, Food, or Storytelling. Over 50 photos were submitted to the contest.

“We had a wonderful selection of photos that illustrated the vibrancy of these students’ experiences abroad,” said Joseph Acquisto, professor of French and director of the SWLC. “We’re glad to celebrate the ‘deep dive’ the students took by linking their study abroad to their language study. That’s where the most substantial growth happens, personally and intellectually, for students who make the excellent choice to study in a place whose language is not their own.” The winners Senior Eden Gostelow’s photo from Tokyo placed in the Everyday Life category. The photo shows Eden’s host mother laughing with family. From Eden’s description: “Afterwards we drank cold beer and watched the sumo. I did the dishes as thanks. A choir of peaceful insects sang swiftly. The sun subsided.” Ryan Davin’s photo was also an Everyday Life winner.

The winners

Shannon Macdonald's photo of a fruit stand in Florence, Italy placed in the Food category. Macdonald and her mom attended the reception in Howe to admire the winning photo. About the Florence experience, she said, “When I came back, it was like a dream.” Veronica Ruth was the second Food category winner.

Ariana Brock’s photo placed in the Storytelling category. Brock captured New Zealand’s infamous “Ben Lomond Track,” at the summit--a hike that averages around 5-6 hours and assumes 3,281 feet of elevation gain. Sharing the Storytelling category win was (two-time winner!) Ryan Davin.

The exhibit's location in Howe seeks to bring more student work into the UVM Libraries, and to partner in new ways with campus organizations that support university-wide goals, such as UVM’s support for student study abroad experiences.

“The Libraries aim to ensure that students who stroll through our doors see not only themselves but also their fellow students in our spaces, said Bryn Geffert, Dean of Libraries. “This exhibit does just that—allowing students to witness the experience of classmates who studied abroad and then to imagine themselves participating in the University of Vermont’s commitment to global engagement.”

The exhibit will remain on display in the library for the coming months; members of the UVM community are encouraged to visit the exhibit, located on the first floor of Howe near Media Services.