Name: Kira Hamilton
Home University: University of Texas at Austin
Summer 2014 Courses at DIS: Health Delivery and Prioritization in Northern Europe, Children in a Multicultural Context, and European Genocides
Hej! I’m Kira Hamilton, an Elementary Education major from Austin, TX — I go to school at the University of Texas at Austin back in the states. I still can’t quite believe I am in Copenhagen! It is a pretty amazing city just from what I have seen in my first couple if days here. I chose to study with DIS because of the wonderful classes and opportunities they have to offer, not to mention to have the chance to live in Copenhagen for the summer. I will be here for 10 weeks this summer taking three classes: Health Delivery and Prioritization in Northern Europe, Children in a Multicultural Context (study tour to Istanbul), and European Genocides (study tour to Poland). I am staying in the Robert Jacobsen Kollegium with another summer writer, Jacqueline Scott, as well.
The main thing I want to get out of living in Copenhagen and studying with DIS is being able to expand my cultural palette and experience a new way of life. I am hoping to learn a little Danish while I am here and to try to immerse myself in as much Danish culture as possible. I want to learn and explore during my summer in order to get the most out of my Copenhagen life as I can in 10 weeks. So far, I feel really comfortable in this city which may seem a tad surprising, it was to me too. I have managed to learn how to take the metro into the city from my kollegium which is my main mode of transportation right now until I get a bike, aside form walking. I have also had the chance to just wander around the City Center (near DIS) to become more comfortable with my way around the DIS area. Wandering is by far the best way to get acquainted with a city and, for Copenhagen, to figure out the streets in the medieval set up of the city center (it is not as grid-like as US cities). Personally, I am very comfortable navigating grid-like city structures in the US so it was an adjustment to start to find my way through the medieval era design of the City Center.
DIS gave us an chance to learn about some of Copenhagen’s history while also learning our way around the city. During our walk from location to location, my group found a section of sidewalk along the harbor that has small, square trampolines in it! We all took a walking break to bounce on the trampolines and while we were enjoying our break, a red-headed Danish boy (around the age of 4) joined me on my small square of the trampoline. We both bounced and laughed and enjoyed the pure bliss of jumping on a sidewalk trampoline. Since this was my first real day in Copenhagen, I felt that this was my official welcoming into the culture and the city. I can only imagine that more rare and special experiences are to come this summer, and I look forward to every minute of it.