AIFS Study Abroad Blog

AIFS “Capture the Culture” Photo Contest Winners

We’re always on the lookout for awesome pictures that truly depict what it’s like to be a student abroad. The AIFS Capture the Culture Photo Contest is an opportunity for students and alumni to present what they feel, well, captures the culture best. We ask candidates to submit photos that make them remember a special time and place that defined their trip overseas.

We had so many fantastic pictures and memories submitted to the contest this time around, making it very difficult to judge which would be victorious. Thank you to everyone who participated!

Without further ado, here are our winners.

Grand Prize

Description: Best Overall. Well-rounded, quintessential study abroad picture.

Congratulations to Sarah Swank from Albright College, who studied abroad with AIFS in Stellenbosch, South Africa in Fall 2015, on being awarded the Grand Prize for the AIFS Study Abroad Capture the Culture Photo Contest! Her photograph truly gave us a sense of what it felt like to experience this early morning trek up Dune 45 in Namibia as she and her classmates ventured to watch the sunrise.


Category: Squad Goals

Description: Organized group shots of you and your study abroad pals.

Congratulations to Allison Ryan from UT Austin who spent her Spring 2016 semester with AIFS in Florence, Italy. The photo she submitted of herself and friends with a herd of camels in Marrakech, Morocco in the Ourika Vealley completely epitomizes the idea of “Squad Goals.”


Category: City Life

Description: The hustle and bustle, popular places, urban happenings, landmarks, and architecture.

Congratulations to Christina Lane from Columbia College in Chicago, who studied abroad with AIFS in Paris, France in Fall 2015! Her magnificent and eye-catching photo of the Palais Royal in Paris stood out among the rest with its extraordinary colors, composition, and how it captured the Parisian culture.


Category: Tradition… Tradition!

Description: Cultural events, festivals, holidays, local activities

Congratulations to Yoana Guerra-Cuevas from Mount St. Mary’s University, who studied abroad with AIFS in Granada, Spain in Fall 2014! AIFS took their group on an excursion to Madrid for a bullfight. Her photo gives a precise impression of what it would be like to be present at this historic Spanish tradition.


Category: The People’s Champ

Description: We post our faves on Facebook and Instagram and the most popular wins!

Congratulations to Ben Rohr from Drake University, who studied abroad with AIFS in Florence, Italy! Out of 19 finalists for this category, Ben’s photo was crowned winner after receiving the most engagement and positive feedback on our Facebook and Instagram accounts. Way to go, Ben!


Category: A Day in the Life

Description: Photos of your residence, homestay, classroom, campus life

Congratulations to Amelia Deering of Roger Williams University, who studied abroad with AIFS in Grenoble, France in Summer 2015! “This was the Université Stendhal-Grenoble campus. With the very interesting and detail brick pattern that covered the ground and the view of the Alps in the background, this picture became the epitome of my experience in Grenoble… I was extremely grateful to have this view when going to class.”


Category: #WeAreAIFS

Description: Program excursions, trips, gatherings, activities, group outings, student/staff interactions

Congratulations to Sarah Swank from Albright College, who studied abroad with AIFS in Stellenbosch, South Africa in Fall 2015! This photo is of the AIFS in Stellenbosch group at the southern-most tip of Africa during their Spring Break on the Garden Route in South Africa. It totally captures the AIFS spirit!


Category: Creativity

Description: Use your artistic expression here! Anything that might not fit into other categories.

Congratulations to Jennifer Oetzell of Biola University, who studied abroad with AIFS in Perth, Australia in Spring 2015! The breathtaking photograph speaks for itself, but the way Jennifer captured the illuminating, crystal-clear night sky during their camping trip in North Western Australia is magnificent.

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