Greetings from Seville, Spain

John Skyler Whitfield – November 2015

Before we dive in to my experience at University of Seville, I’d like to express my gratitude for the kindness, laughs, and time spent over delicious cuisine that I’ve shared with my Spanish family. It has been an absolute pleasure living with Paqui and Alberto; from giving me an all access pass to any and everything in the refrigerator, accommodating my mom during her stay in Seville, and buying my train ticket to Madrid after my debit card was stolen (just a few things among a long list of kind acts), they always go above and beyond to make me feel welcome in their home.
In addition to a great experience with my homestay family, I was lucky enough to have all my university courses in the main campus, known as the ¨Royal Tobacco Factory¨.

Whitfield- Seville SpainBuilt in the early 18th century, converted into an academic building in the 1950s, the University served to complement preexisting marvels in the city (like The Cathedral and Real Alcazar) as well as house machinery for tobacco production which speaks for its expansive, high-ceilinged rooms and grand styling. It’s a special and rare occasion that I come across a campus capable of rivaling the pastoral beauty and classic style of Hampden Sydney College; but the University of Seville is surely one of them. Located in a highly trafficked part of the city, the university doesn’t exactly have the flora fauna of HS-C, but the building itself makes up for it. Reminiscent of a castle or well-ornamented fortress, plastic seems to no longer exist in this this wonderful display of 18th century, industrial architecture. The building is surrounded by a mote, stone walls (adorned with intricate reliefs), and larger than life iron gates. Within the walls of the university, are milky-red, marble floors and staircases, heavenly stained-glass windows, sturdy, hard-wood desks and doors from days of yore, and magnificent enclosed courtyards encasing statues and fountains… I find the list of wonders in this building only limited to ones attention to detail, as every square inch of this building is truly a sight to behold.

 Whitfield-Seville Spain Nov 2015

Whitfield-Seville Spain Nov 2015.jpg #2 As a woodworker, the level of craftsmanship found throughout the University (in all her structural mediums) is as inspiring as it is impressive- which in turn has greatly enhanced my classroom experience and moral here as a student. While my pictures don´t do the university justice, I hope they can at least give a vague idea as to why this building has become such a special place to me.

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