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“While taking a Cuban cooking class (which I would highly recommend should you find yourself studying abroad in Cuba through USAC) the professors opened their home to me. Over our home-cooked meals, we would discuss culture, society and even the topic many might avoid: the relationship between the United States and Cuba. They were open and candid, allowing me to ask any kind of question I could think of. As cheesy as this sounds, they opened more than just their home to me; they opened up their hearts as well.”
University of Nevada
Participant in La Habana, Cuba
The largest Caribbean island, Cuba was a key geographical and social area in the colonial Americas—offering large agriculturally rich areas, many bays, and a desirable location in the Caribbean for trade. Its history from Spanish colonial times to its time as an American territory, to independence and revolution, to the present-day authoritarian government illustrates the impact of both slavery and imperialism. Physically close but politically isolated from the United States, Cuba was also pivotal in the twentieth-century events impacting the US, from the Spanish-American War to the Cuban Missile Crisis. As a result, Cuba has maintained a cultural and mythic presence in the history of the US and surrounding region. One of the last bastions of communism, Cuba’s rich history, intriguing modern events and society, and unfolding future make it a fascinating place to live and study.
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