International Connections


Emily Shabowski

Major: Event Management


Minor/option/emphasis: Hospitality Management

Year: Sophomore
Hometown, State: Geneva, Illinois

Type of experience: Study Abroad
Experience: Experience Prague, Czech Republic the Awesome (AESHM) Way
Experience website: http://isuabroad.iastate.edu/?go=CHSCzech
Destination: Czech Republic

Overall experience..
Overall, this trip was amazing, and was a one of a kind experience. I enjoyed getting to know all my fellow travelers, and the trips we were given. I learned a lot from the educational trips we took to the palace, the intercontinental hotel, and the Czech tourism office. This trip to Prague has broadened my mind, and helped me learn more about different cultures, traditions, and history. I believe this trip will assist my career in Event Management including working with clients of different backgrounds and working with different and unique spaces.

I learned...
I learned about the international opportunity through an email my adviser, Liz Harris sent out.

An impact to my life...
I have always wanted to travel abroad and when I found out about the Prague study abroad that was pertained to Event Management, I knew that this was my chance. I am fortunate enough and extremely happy I got to participate in this program. We got to see many different event spaces, including palaces, gardens, hotels, and wineries. All of these were beautiful places and we were lucky enough to talk to workers at the spaces that gave us tours and explained what has been done there. This trip has showed me what it would be like to work with many different cultures around the world. I had the benefit of traveling to a very colorful, beautiful, and educational location like Prague to learn more about my career from a different perspective. This trip to Prague has broadened my mind, and helped me learn more about different cultures, traditions, and history. I believe this trip will assist my career in Event Management including working with clients of different backgrounds and working with different and unique spaces.

My most valuable learning experience...
We got a tour of the Lobkowics Palace and the event spaces with the lady in charge of the events. This was very beneficial to me because my dream is to run events in historical houses. This provided me with information about what kind of events they do in the palace, what work goes into the events, and how it all works for being in a historical palace. One event I found to be very interesting was an event kind of like an in real life game of clue. What I found so fascinating was how they go all out and everybody dressed old fashioned, they decorated with historical pieces, they had horses and carriages, and many other accessories that brought the whole event together. She showed us the many rooms, ballrooms, and the patio they use for events. They were all beautiful and unique in their own way to provide a different experience and feel to any event

I will never forget...
We had a larger group that went to visit the Jewish Quarter. This was one of my favorite activities of the trip. In the 13th venture Jewish people were forced to leave their homes and settle in on area of Prague including Jews from Spain, Moravia, Germany, and Austria. Most of the significant buildings were saved during destruction. “Adolf Hitler decided to preserve the Jewish Quarter as a ‘Museum of an Extinct Race.’ The Nazis gathered Jewish artifacts from other countries and transported them to Prague to form the museum.” The Jewish Cemetery within the quarter is the largest Jewish cemetery in Europe. It has 12,000 gravestones on site. However, space was scarce so bodies were buried on top of each other and layered up to 10 feet deep. It was chilling to see that many gravestones in such a small area of Prague.

A surprising discovery...
What surprised me, was that many people from the Czech Republic are not very expressive or show emotion all the time. They do not smile unless they are happy so they have blank faces most of the time. I believe that knowing this, and when I'm working with people from other cultures, it will help me gauge their reactions about how well of a job I am doing for them.

Advice for others...
I would tell anyone who is looking for a study abroad or who is nervous about going abroad to go for it! Even if you're nervous, it is a once in a lifetime experience and you can learn so much from just two weeks. It has changed my life and I enjoyed every minute of my experience.

Submit your experience!

International Connections home