The Political Science Program at Texas A&M University-Kingsville (TAMU-K), with the assistance of the University’s Division of International Studies & Programs, is pleased to introduce its Pacific Studies Program 2015 - a collaborative initiative between A&M-Kingsville and the University of Otago, Dunedin, New Zealand. The Pacific Studies Program (PSP) is being co-directed by Dr. Nirmal Goswami, Professor of Political Science, TAMU-K and Dr. Elaine Webster, Director, Summer School and Continuing Education, University of Otago. The PSP will include graduate and undergraduate students traveling to and staying in New Zealand in July of 2015, attending classes at the University of Otago, and visiting multiple sites through field trips in the greater Otago region. Areas of focus include history, politics, economics, culture, sustainability and environmental policies, etc., with reference to both the greater Pacific region and New Zealand. You are all invited to cyber travel with us as we learn about the uniqueness of New Zealand and the surrounding region. This blog will document our experience. You are welcome to post comments.

Hoggies NZ Slideshow

Friday, July 10, 2015

Kingsville to Dunedin

A two and a half hour drive to San Antonio, then a 3.5 hour flight to San Francisco, followed by 12-hour flight across the southern oceans, the equator and the international date line. Once we arrived in Auckland, NZ, we had two hours to grab our luggage, go through immigration and customs. Then we find out that Aaron’s bag was lost, while he was trying get it resolved, we proceeded to go through immigration. Immigration was a breeze, but by the time we made it to the desk to re-check our bags we were told it was too late to check our bags from the international terminal and we’d have to walk around to the the domestic terminal and drop off bags for our final flight  to Dunedin. This “15 minute” walk in the early morning cold, with luggage, felt never-ending! Some of us fell behind and did not make it to the domestic terminal until minutes before our flight was to leave. We rushed through security, confused and not knowing wether we should board our flight since Dr. Goswami had gone to help Aaron settle his luggage issues. We finally made it to the gate with 5 minutes to spare, still no sign of Dr. G or Aaron, worried, we decided to call Dr. G, as we were about to call, we see Dr. G! As we board our plane we are still not sure where Aaron is. Once we settled into our seats we see Aaron board the plane! The previous two hours of rushing to catch our last flight were extremely stressful; the two hour flight to Dunedin was exactly what we needed to relax after that. The flight to Dunedin was breathtaking. It was amazing to see such stunning landscape and beautiful snow-capped mountains as we flew across the length of New Zealand. When we landed in Dunedin we saw nothing but greenery, farms, and sheep everywhere and it finally hit us... we are in New Zealand! 
-Catrina G.

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