Tomorrow is the 4th of July. It’s a day for reflection and thinking about the wildly improbable series of events that led to the creation of the United States. You may be here right now, getting excellent preparation for your semester abroad. Or you may be getting ready for the fall, at home, trying to figure out who you will be and what you will do when you travel to America. Either way, we think it is important to get ready. And so, on this day when Americans should reflect upon what it means to be an American, to look back on the sacrifices that people made for freedom, and how we’ve either taken advantage of it or sadly squandered it, we want to listen to some songs about America, those that embody the nation. These aren’t national anthems- we’ve already covered those– but rock songs, and blues songs- the two true American art forms. None of them glorify the country, some scold, some praise, some capture the feeling of freedom. All sing a different part of America. This isn’t a master class in American history. But listening to this music will give you an idea, even a subconscious one, of what the country in which you choose to study is all about. And these songs about America provide a great soundtrack for tomorrow’s fireworks.
“Strange Fruit”- Billie Holiday
“The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down”- The Band
“Born in the USA”- Bruce Springsteen
“American Girl”- Tom Petty
“California Stars”- Wilco
The international student experience is both challenging and exciting. Whether you are a student considering studying in America, their parent, the host family, the Head of School, an international coordinator, or even a potential classmate, there are as many opportunities for confusion as there are to learn. The ISPA is here to help bridge that gap, to ensure that this opportunity and adventure is met with the highest level of success.