In June, the first group from MidAmerica Nazarene University's new MNU Europe
program spent two weeks traveling Europe, accompanied by faculty and sponsors.
The program is based in Büsingen, Switzerland, on European Nazarene College’s former residential campus. European Nazarene College recently shifted its focus from residential to decentralized education, but the campus continues to serve the learning centers across the region.
Through MNU Europe, students can study general core classes, such as history and fine arts, at the former EuNC campus. More diverse classes such as American Writers in Paris and Church History, each with an emphasis on intercultural studies, are also available.
Over the course of the two weeks, the students traveled to 10 different cities in Austria, France, Switzerland, and Germany. The students were able to experience their classrooms as they traveled to the places they were studying in their textbooks.
Though some of the students had traveled overseas before, even the well-traveled of the group were exposed to new experiences as the students were given personal exploration time to become better acquainted with the cities and languages.
Not only were the students able to see the historical churches affected by the Reformation, they were also able to visit local Nazarene community churches.
On the first day the group arrived, the students, MNU faculty, and sponsors, accompanied by some EuNC faculty members, took a walk to Bergkirche St. Michael, a centuries-old church in Büsingen. U.S. students, European faculty, and Büsingen resident’s voices united to fill the chapel with the a capella notes of traditional hymns, a moment described as nothing less than powerful by MidAmerica student Chris Matsch
The MNU Europe program seeks to unite diversity through experience and personal growth. As MidAmerica continues its program in the fall and spring semesters of the upcoming school year, it is expected to not only involve the MidAmerica community, but also neighboring and international students.
"Not just MNU, but also European students are invited to come and students from all our sister universities and colleges as well," said Lorie Beckum, MNU Europe director and previous Büsingen resident.
Kailene Cloud, who traveled to Ghana in the summer of 2011, will be a fourth-year student at MNU
"America, Ghana, Europe are all unique in their own aspects," she said. "You can call them home, each place. Each one is beautiful."
--Church of the Nazarene Eurasia Region