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Transitions Abroad Magazine Mar/Apr 2005 Vol. XXVIII, NO. 5

Information Exchange

Traveler’s Almanac

Abroad at Home
Cultural Exchange Here at Home
Peter D. Krahenbuhl

Interview
Sarah Edman: Travel and Writing Rolf Potts

Immersion Travel
The Road To Mandalay Robert Powell Sangster
The Real Portugal Volker Poelzl
The Adriatic for Less Harry Kelly
Good Deals in London Carol Perehudoff
Paris and Its Perfumes Michele R. Lock
Traveling to Learn in France Anna Gibson
Discover Calabria, Italy Michelle Kaminsky
The Middle East and the Single Woman Susan Scott
Salzburg Marilyn and Paul Nejelski

Back Door Travel
Europe in 2005 Rick Steves

Study Abroad
Living and Learning in Oxford Emily Hilk
School for International Training Lesley R. Turnbull
In Search of Leo Africanus Miriam Cooke and Bruce Lawrence, with research assistance from program participant Kevin Fogg
Graduate Study Abroad Jessica P. Hayden
Planning for Study Abroad Gloria J. Bennett
Extended Stays in Munich Heather Wynn
Take a Trip to Mexico Jamie Frederick
Living in London Augusta Wilson
Cost-Cutting in London: Ten Hints Juliette Diggs
Volunteering in Ecuador Kate Gustafson
At Home Abroad Lisa Hadesman
Spanish Studies, Buenos Aires Sarah Tonner
Bond University Jackie Desmarais

Study Abroad and Teen Travel
The Best Resources
Success with High Schoolers Abroad Bret Chenkin
Dominican Generosity Will Arndt
Youth For Understanding Chelsea Fosse

Working Traveler
Teaching in France Amber Foster
Tune Into the World Laine Walters
Work in Italy Creatively Emma Bird
Acting in Germany Katreen Hardt
Summer Volunteering in London Tanya Dukes
Chiang Mai’s Job Opportunties M.J. Young
Volunteer in Spain Roy A. Barnes

International Careers
Build on an International Employment Profile Jean-Marc Hachey

Living Abroad
Paris for Free Bradwell Jackson
Before Moving to Europe Caroline Bisson
House Hunting in France Sharon Goldstein
How to Move Abroad Jacqueline D. Brown

Program News & Notes

Book Reviews

Marketplace

Classifieds

Transitions Abroad
Why Giving Matters Tim Leffel

From the Editor

When the Indian Ocean tsunami hit we had just gone to press with the January/February issue of Transitions Abroad, which highlights Asia and the Pacific Rim. Reading about the beauty of the region and its people made this tragedy all the more poignant.

The world’s response has been a generous outpouring of volunteerism and resources. Now, some months out of the tsunami, aid is even more essential. So is traveling. The tsunami-affected regions are largely dependent on the travel industry for their livelihoods. By spending tourist dollars responsibly in impacted countries, we can help them rebuild—if we follow the empowering and sustainable practices addressed by Tim Leffel (page 88) and Jessica Hayden (page 14), and summed up in the responsible travel guidelines from ResponsibleTravel.com:

  • Hire local guides who will be aware of local sensitivities
  • Enjoy eating in local restaurants, rather than only in hotels
  • Use public transport
  • Ask about gifts for local people that maybe needed before you travel
  • Buy gifts for those at home from local craft sellers
  • Spend part of your holiday staying in locally-owned accommodation

Jan Egeland, the U.N. official coordinating aid for tsunami survivors, praised the world for its likely fulfillment of 100 percent of the U.N.’s tsunami crisis appeal. But he worried that aid to Southeast Asia would detract from other endangered regions routinely receiving only a fraction of the funds required to save lives. One of his examples (quoted from the BBC): “The Democratic Republic of Congo, where 1,000 people die daily of preventable diseases or because of the conflict there, [suffers] the equivalent of a tsunami every five months.”

Many of these humanitarian crises are manmade, as is the case in military-ruled Myanmar (Burma). Despite concerns over its repressive government and Aung San Suu Kyi’s wishes for travelers to stay away, we think it is worth sharing Rob Sangster’s mesmerizing and candid "The Road to Mandalay" (page 18), as well as Debbie Jefkin’s cover photo and "The Last Page" image. Both are stirring reminders of Myanmar’s apolitical magnificence. Prospective travelers should continue to monitor events in Myanmar and consider the arguments for and against travel there.

There has been a surge in volunteer travel in the wake of the disaster, and we’ve received many queries on how people can roll up their sleeves and help in tsunami-impacted regions. Some organizations like United Volunteers have a waiting list of several hundred due to an overwhelming response. A sampling of how our advertisers are helping in tsunami relief efforts is on page 15. On our website, www.TransitionsAbroad.com, we have maintained invaluable resources and information since December 26.

Despite global tragedies, natural and manmade, students continue to explore far and wide. More than just studying abroad, they are making the most of their overseas opportunities with immersion activities like living with host families, working, and volunteering. Their experiences, as well as 2005 Transitions Abroad Student Writing Contest winner Emily Hilk's article on studying at Oxford University, start on page 37. We’ve also moved the teen travel resources section to this issue and included high school students' perspectives on international exchanges.

Finally, we would like to thank Sri Lankan and multiple-time Transitions Abroad contributor Preethi Burkholder and her husband Trent, as well as Transitions Abroad columnist Tim Leffel. At their request, we doubled their payments, which will go to the tsunami relief effort.

Next issue’s, special focus will be on language schools and language-learning vacations.

Sherry Schwarz

Publisher and Editor
Sherry Schwarz

Founding Editor and Publisher
Dr. Clay A. Hubbs

Contributing Editors
Alison Gardner (Senior Travel)
Susan Griffith (Work)
Cynthia Harriman (Family Travel)
Zahara Heckscher (Volunteering)
Ron Mader (Latin America)
Deborah McLaren (Ecotourism)
Bill Mohan (Teen Travel)
William Nolting (International Education and Work)
Volker Poelzl (Living)
Rob Sangster (Independent Travel)
Rick Steves (Budget Travel)
Tracy Scharn and Pamela Houston (Disability Travel)
Kathy Widing (Travel Books)

Design
Nashima Gokani

Office Manager
Mary Catherine Maxwell

Advertising Manager
Kate McGrail

Office Manager
Claudia Hanson

Intern
Julia Rosen

Cover
Debbie Jefkin
Novice in sunflower field, Myanmar