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  • Joseph Strauss

Student Pickpockets Self to Feel Like They're Studying Abroad

While COVID-19 has stopped students from being able to physically travel the globe, exciting new programs are offering the unique chance to study abroad in an online setting.

“At first I didn’t know if it was worth the six-thousand dollars,” said third-year student Will Drummond, who is taking an online semester in Barcelona. But with the help of some added props and tricks, Drummond now feels like he’s practically on La Rambla, sticking out like a Northern Ontarian in Southern Ontario.

“The first step was hastily shoving my passport and wallet into a pocket because I’m tired of wearing a money belt,” said Drummond. “Then I distracted myself with some Duolingo, accidentally ordered cow shit from a xurreria in broken Spanish, and––right as I bought a keychain which I didn’t realize displays a national symbol of Mexico––subtly pickpocketed my own belongings.”

Drummond said he spent three unsuccessful hours searching for his passport, before conducting a virtual tour of Sagrada Familia during which he felt a sense of pure dread so intense that he felt like he was really inside the building.

“The pandemic has cost us so much,” says Drummond. “But it’s also given me the unique experience of studying abroad while still paying for rent in Toronto.”

Photo Credit: Joseph Strauss



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