The College of Saint Rose and UDELAS in Panama

A partnership about education, culture and the exchange of ideas

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The Panama Canal!

One of the 7 Wonders of the Industrial World: The Panamá Canal

While living and working in Panamá I visited one of the 7 Wonders of the Industrial World. There is an immense amount of history about the Canal. The Panama Canal connects the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans.
I am impressed with how every Panamanian knows the history of the Canal. They are up to date with the resources, use of the Canal, the history and the international relations.
On my second day in Panamá, I went to see the Canal at the Miraflores Locks. Click here to continue reading!


The Importance of Family and Free Time in Panama


Family is one, if not the most important, aspect in many cultures. While living here, I decided to save this blog for one of my late entries because of the various interviews I’ve encountered. I am combining this topic with que hacen durante su tiempo libre (what goes on during the free time here in Panamá) because it is very common for families to spend time together during their free time. Observing families and interviewing friends I have made here has helped me understand the family dynamic within Panamá. Click here to continue reading!

The Education System

MARIANNE- The Education System.

In my opinion, education is one of the best systems created to help us plan for the future. From a very young age, children attend schools to learn new material and acquire skills to help them plan for a successful future. St. Rose has developed a program to begin a partnership with UDELAS (Universidad Especializada de las Americas.) UDELAS has helped us find placements in schools so I could work hand in hand with a teacher here in Panamá! The Education system in Panamá is similar to that of the U.S. We each have private and public schools. Most students who are sent to private schools are children who have both parents working.

Jaime, a professor from UDELAS told me about the Education System in Panamá. Clicke here to continue reading!

Cheap, delicious food in Panamá? Sí

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Complimentary breadsticks with dipping sauces

The food in Panamá is a traditional collection of fried, salty, delicious food.  Panamá is known for their mariscos (fish.)  On every corner, you can find a vendor selling soup, fried whole fish and soft drinks.  Although I have only been here for a week, it is easy to become accustomed to the traditional Panamanian cuisine.  My hostal is located near the Punta Pacifica neighborhood where there are many expensive restaurants and bars.  An average cost of food at any expensive restaurant in the city is approximately $16-$20.  I know this may not sound like our normal five star restaurants in the states; however, I refuse to pay a lot for food when I have eaten a full plate of food (rice, beans, chili, plantains and salad) for $2.50…including a can of Kist- Panama’s Fanta!  Therefore, it is possible to keep your money tight and enjoy delicious food for cheap prices.

Throughout my week, I have eaten some traditional Panamanian foods such as churros, patacones, platanos, sancocho, empanadas de carne, y brochetas de carne.  First I’d like to start with patacones panameños.  Patacones are green plantains that are cut and fried.  If you are traveling to Panamá, these are a must.  I have a picture of my delicious, salty patacones.  Platanos are a traditional Spanish plantain.  The platanos I ate were ducle (sweet) and crispy around the edges.  Sancocho is a soup made with many vegetables and beef or chicken.  You can find sancocho at street vendors.  I was lucky enough to taste this soup at the school I am working in.  It cost me $0.50 for a medium size soup bowl.  I thought it had a delicious flavor.  I have tried Empanadas in Argentina and this was my first time tasting Panamanian empanadas.  As a recent traveler to Argentina, I must say the Panamanian empanadas are delicious as well.  I paid $0.45 for one empanada with meat (con carne) and it was flat with a little sweet meat.  One night we went to Causeway Amador for dinner.  Causeway is a strip of restaurants at the end of the city.  This is by far one of my favorite areas of Panamá.  I felt safe and the food was delicious.  I ordered a brocheta de carne.  This is an exact replica of a shish kabob in the states.  The meat was absolutely delicious and spiced perfectly.  The skewer consisted of 4-5 chunks of beef, sweet peppers, and onions.  Churros are a traditional dessert.  I ate a churro with melted caramel in the middle, along with powdered sugar on the outside.  This by far is my favorite thing I have tried.  Unfortunately, I have a food allergy to certain shellfish and I tend not to order any type of fish when dining out; however, my roommates have tried cerviche, fried fish, and brochetas with bacon-wrapped scallops.  They loved the cerviche and said the fish was fresh and cooked well. 

Fruit is extremely cheap in Panamá as well.  Typical Panamanian fruit is pineapples, mangos, coconuts, and different types of melon.  A whole pineapple costs $1.00 from a fruit market on the street.  During this week, I have met some interesting people.  Adan, a student at the University, allowed me to record a video of him explaining typical Panamanian food and much more. (I will try to upload it.)  Adan said the food is mostly fried, salty, and cheap; however, I have been spending a lot of money on food and need to find those little restaurants with traditional, homemade, cheap food!   So far, I believe Panamá’s food is delicious.  The food is cheap as long as you find the right restaurants.  I recommend street vendors and the mall for great, cheap food. With three weeks to go, I will add specific restaurant names as soon as I find them!