Students Share Stories from CubaOn Wednesday, October 7, 2015, four Skyline College students shared their study abroad experiences in Cuba to a packed conference room. The session was titled Reflections from Cuba: The Study Abroad Experience was a teach-back session coordinated by SMCCCD Study Abroad and Skyline College Professor of History John Ulloa.

The four students on the panel – Joseph Adams, Jazmena Bannag, Bianca Blanco, and Conor O’Brien – shared humorous stories and poignant lessons on their experiences in Havana, Cuba. Professor Ulloa presented a detailed itinerary of the program and shared a video.

Adams commented on how different the food and culture was and how he and the group could not avoid the “Havana hustle” when shopping or walking in the city of Havana. When asked about how students managed the cost of the trip –approximately $3,900 including international airfare – Bannag said that she fundraised through her networks using crowdfunding.

The students studied in Cuba as part of the course, Life and Culture of the Local Area – Cuba. The experience provided all panelists with a deeper appreciation of what they have in the U.S. It was Skyline College’s first faculty-led study abroad course. Professor Ulloa plans to offer the course next year as well. If Skyline College community is interested in the course next year can contact John Ulloa at or Zaid Ghori at

Article and photo by Zaid Ghori