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Students get firsthand look at life, commerce in Cuba

Randolph students in front of a classic Cuban airplane.A group of Randolph students started their summer off the beaten path, living in and studying the economic structure of a socialist country as part of a Summer Study Seminar.

Economics professor Andria Smythe led Randolph’s first trip to Cuba as part of the Economic Well-Being in Cuba seminar May 15-23. During their stay in Havana, students toured free enterprise businesses like farms and taxi companies, met Cuban college students at the University of Havana, and visited historical sites like Plaza de Revolucion and the Bay of Pigs. They also shopped in one of the city’s most famous market districts.

Cuban flag and Fidel Castro billboardSmythe wanted her students to think about how economic policies affect their individual well-being in ways they might not have realized.

“These are the types of educational experiences that have the potential to transform a student’s college career,” she said. “I guarantee that a trip to Cuba will be a talking point at many future job interviews. It will also be cool for students to tell their children and grandchildren that they were among the first Americans to visit Cuba after relations were normalized.”

See the full album of photos on the Randolph College Facebook page.



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