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Faculty member and students to explore Madrid

January 7, 2003

De Madrid al Cielo. "From Madrid to Heaven."

Austin Peay students and those who accompany them can assess the accuracy of that slogan for themselves this summer, as they explore Madrid, Spain.

Led by Dr. Miguel Ruiz, associate professor of languages and literature, the four-week "Study of Spanish in Spain" program totally immerses students in not only the romantic language of the Spanish capital but also its cosmopolitan lifestyle.

"Madrid is the political, economic and cultural center of Spain," says Ruiz. "Students will see plays, museums and exhibits they'd never see in Nashville."

In addition to exploring the history and culture of Madrid, students will venture to nearby cities, including Toledo, Spain's ancient capital. "Toledo combines the three cultures of Spain: Christian, Moorish and Jewish," says Ruiz.

Another full-day excursion will take students into Segovia to explore a 2,000-year-old aqueduct that once carried water from the mountains to the Romans who lived there.

Students also will visit the Prado, a museum of international reputation, and the Royal Palace, noteworthy even in a country known for its castles.

Central to the program are the Spanish language classes, which are offered five hours a day, five afternoons a week, and at all levels, from beginning through graduate. But some of the most intense learning takes place outside the classroom, in the homes where students reside throughout their stay. They converse daily with the carefully selected host families who provide shelter, food and laundry services.

Who can participate in the program? Anyone, says Ruiz. "Not only people who want to teach Spanish but anyone who's interested in working with an international company. In this post-NAFTA world, companies need people who can speak Spanish fluently.

"It's also great for students who just want to experience an international culture."

Cost of the month-long, all-inclusive trip is $3,250. "And everything is covered," Ruiz says. "Air fare, transportation from the airport, room and board, text and materials, excursions, health insurance—everything."

For more information, or to sign up, call Ruiz at 7855 or email him at