PLC Study Abroad Summer Trip 2018

I had the opportunity to take Global Activism, Art and Leadership at the OU Arezzo campus over the course of 3 weeks this summer, and I will be forever changed by the time I spent abroad through OU. I completely altered my expectation of the classroom experience, challenged how I thought and processed education and learning, and changed the way I travel.

Going and meeting Italian activist organizations was one of the most memorable and unique parts of my study abroad experience. Going with my friends who have leadership experience at OU added a dynamic to the experience that was different than going alone because they were all active participants in the conversations facilitated by the organizations we had the opportunity to converse and engage with. We met with Libera, an Anti-Mafia activist group, as well as Oxfam and others. These groups are active in the current refugee crisis along with other issues in Italy. They work to find solutions and raise awareness for the issues that matter to them, and genuinely wanted our help to raise awareness for the problems at hand.

Seeing firsthand the art and historical artifacts in Italy was just incredible. From touring Pompeii with Dr. DuCleaux to seeing the Vatican, Colosseum, and museums like the Uffizi and Duomo, my perception of the Roman and Italian world changed immensely, as well as my perception of history and our active involvement with it. I can truly say after being abroad that I returned as a student ready to participate in hands-on learning experiences, face challenges and problem-solve on campus, and engage with a move diverse population of students on OU’s campus.

exploring Arezzo!
A small flower shop in Arezzo, Italy
Tuscan Vineyard
The Duomo// Florence, Italy
Penitent Magdalene by Donatello
Trevi Fountain// Rome, Italy
Colosseum// Rome, Italy
The Monastery// Arezzo, Italy



First Amendment

Corey Disler, 56

  1. “I agree with all the freedoms because it is important for citizens to have a voice in democracy and the direction of our nation. ”
  2. “I support all of these freedoms. I think that they are fundamental in what America is and why we are the nation that is so globally respected. ”
  3. “I do recognize these laws as those of the First Amendment.”

Riley Vann, 19

  1. “I agree with these freedoms, I think they are pretty basic and promised to us in the constitution.”
  2. “I agree with the freedom of speech, but I simultaneously feel as though that should not include hate speech. Especially when it comes to marginalized populations.”
  3.  “Yeah they are the First Amendment.”

Reece Henry, 18

  1. “I agree with those rights, the First Amendment… do people not agree with the First Amendment?”
  2. “Are people saying no to these questions? Yes I agree with all portions of the first amendment. I want to be a constitutional lawyer.”
  3. “ They are the rights provided in the First Amendment.”

Terri Disler, 53

  1. I agree with the rights because without them our country would not be a working democracy.
  2. I support the freedom of press because it allows all opinions to be printed without government censorship. If this was not our right, we would never be fully informed.
  3. “These are rights guaranteed by the first amendment.”

Brenna Hibbs,  18

  1. “I would agree with these freedoms.”
  2. “I do not think any of them are excessive, I think it is how people use them that determines if people see them as too excessive or not.”
  3. “Yes, I recognized them as the first amendment.”


Everyone I talked to agreed with the freedoms of the first amendment. I think that everyone also agreed that it depends on your interpretation of the constitution and how people choose to use them on a day to day basis that determines what it means for them to be excessive or not. Overall, I think people agree it is a sufficient amendment and provides rights as well as security through the United States.


The people I interviewed were in support of the first amendment because it provides us with basic freedoms they saw as fundamental to their rights. it is important to note that all my interviewers are citizens of America and knew the constitution and their rights given to them in the First Amendment.



My interviewees saw the freedoms established in the First Amendment as necessary and proper, which was the goal of the Bill of Rights in the first place. I think that it is pretty incredible that all this time later, we as a nation can still agree that these are fundamental human rights and deserve to be protected as such. however, having grown up with the First Amendment and knowing it, I was expecting agreement on these rights.




I am so excited for the chance to study abroad to Italy with the 57th PLC class this summer for 3 weeks. We will be leaving the 13th of May and we are so excited! we will be travelling all around Italy, which will be such a fun experience. I will be taking a political activism course from Dr. Rebecca Cruise and she is so wise, I cannot wait to be under her instruction. I think that this experience will be life changing and an incredible end to my freshman year at the University of Oklahoma. Overall, I am excited to see Europe, experience the culture, eat delicious food, and gain a greater understanding of the world and the people in it. I think that being a globalized individual is very important, and I am excited to take a step into becoming more well rounded as a student, citizen, peer, and future employee.



This year I had the privilege to be in PLC. It was such an honor and an incredible experience. Seeing how it has shaped the course of my freshman year has been so special, and I will be forever grateful for the connections I have made through this organization. It is sad to now be an alum of PLC following our final meeting Tuesday, however I think that it is sweet to finally be in a transition phase of moving out of freshman year. Now lets get us to Itlay!!


international game night

One of my favorite activities I attended as a peer mentor this semester was international game night. It was such a cool experience getting to talk to students from all different parts of the world during their first weeks of class at OU. They all have such unique stories and playing board games is a fun way to interact with them. For my group, we played the game scattegories, which was interesting because they are using their second language to play against us as native english speakers at a game that requires knowledge of the language. I learn so much from them and I am so grateful to have served as a peer mentor this semester. The experience has been so cool and I have thoroughly appreciated the opportunity to meet and interact with the OU international studies department and international students at OU.


switching majors

One of the most daunting tasks that one can do throughout their time in college is going in to the enrollment office to switch your major. Whether it be switching from psychology to sociology or business to Pre-med, a change in direction is a big decision and one that for most is not made lightly. I always thought I would be the person to enter college and know exactly what I was going to do from day 1 and not change. That thought, however, could not have been further from the truth as I soon found out. I started as an international business major, and switched during my first enrollment day to psychology with a double minor in Spanish and Non Profit organizational studies. I loved my psychology class, but had no idea what I would do for a career. Therefore, I went in to my advisor and changed for a third time to Public Relations with a double minor in psychology and non-profit organizational studies. Following Winter break, I arrived back on campus and immediately changed again to Business Management with a double minor in marketing and professional writing. While I have not officially changed. I am sticking with (for now) business management, marketing and changing professional writing to Non-Profit. While it is a lot of changes, it is better to end up where you are happy than stay and be silent.

research paper “Me Too and Modern Media”

I wrote my research paper over the #MeToo movement and how social media determined the course of its success and most of its public meaning after its breaking as a hashtag on twitter. This research analyzes how the movement came to be by Tarana Burke in 2006 and why, 10 years later, it finally became the anthem to the modern day feminist movement. The paper further analyzes the timeline of events and why the convergence with specific forms of media played more of a role in the movement, specifically through the “trending” feature on social media. Finally, it looks at how Hollywood’s involvement played a specific role and changed how the media interacts with Hollywood toward social movements and vice versa, and why they chose to step up versus hide in this specific case. Overall, This paper stands as research on the history of Tarana Burke, the founding of the Me Too movement 2006-2016, and why that matters for the movement and the continuation of it after it stops trending on social media. This paper takes in to account the reality of our changing media world and what that can look like for the feminist movement, as well as other movements, moving forward. This paper was an ever-evolving piece of work because so much of what we know about the #MeToo movement has been released within the past few months. Therefore, most of this paper is observation based and fact based on what has happened in the past, what we see now, and what we have seen in the past in relation to the future of the #MeToo Movement.


queer eye

Queer Eye is the Netflix TV show that made it to the top of all my friend’s ques this past semester. I was unsure how I felt about the concept of the show at first, but after watching an episode I was convinced on the TV show. It is fun and not offensive to the queer community, which was an original concern of mine with the show. Overall, I love what the fab 5 do for the men they made over and I think it was also very entertaining. I am excited for season 2. Shows like this have made the top of my list because they aren’t shows you have to binge-watch, you are able to rest in between episodes. This is perfect for students because while it is nice to have the mental break, watching 28 hours of Stranger Things is not the key to making an A in your classes.


the great british baking show

This show may be the best thing to bless the television screen. Appropriate for all ages and always entertaining, I think I love it so much because they are competitive but not as much as American baking shows. They taste each other’s food, behave in a proper way, help one another, and celebrate with each other. It is so sweet, literally and figuratively. The accents are also a plus. I am excited to try out all their recipes, especially the tarts, scones, and biscuits (cookies). The mist confusing part about the show sometimes is their names for things. The first 20 times I watched it I was confused on some of the terminology, but now I consider myself a British baking specialist.


teacher walkout

The teacher walkout is a response to a long-coming wound that was sooner than later going to result in war among our schools and legislature in Oklahoma. While it is frustrating that we are in such a place, it is a time of immense growth for students in political efficacy, and a season where teachers have to set down their textbooks and fight for the institutions that hold their careers and the future of our state and nation.

As a student, it is frustrating that we have gotten to this point. The dollar amount on my education is pathetic. Out legislators, though their policies and actions, tell us that our education is not worth anything to them. Yet they all received educations. My tuition rises every year because they cannot find the money to fund our university or public institutions in general. But what may be more crude is the number os teachers having to leave the state to find work. The number of teachers having to leave the field they chose because they cannot make a livable salary doing what they love. The teachers that work 3 jobs on their own in order to support their family despite their husbands salaries. The teachers that are continuing to pursue doctorate degrees so they can be better educators, knowing a year of school will cost more than their yearly salary.


its heartbreaking. its week 2. it ends here.