Prof. John Dunn from Valdosta State University was our guest for outdoor classes offered to students working in UG’s Historical tourism MA (weekend course), November 13th, December 4th and 11th 2021.
Prof. Dunn is a visiting professor at the Faculty of History, University of Gdańsk in winter semester 2021/2022. We were delighted to show him around Oliwa and its beautifully forested hills. At the same time he could peer observe prof. Magdalena Nowak’s outdoor classes and experience being guided by the Polish students.
Students presented historical sites in Polish and prof. Nowak translated their presentations into English. Students were perfecting their guide skills for Oliwa. Thanks to excellent preparation and very good guiding skills, prof. Dunn could learn more about the history of this beautiful place and see its most interesting monuments.
On the first day we visited the Oliwa Park, the Abbots' Palace and the Cathedral. The second day was devoted to St Jacob Church and the Plague House (the Gate Hause). We also climbed the Pachołek Hill and the Luiza’s Hill (the Oliwa Battle Hill). Some of the participants even went up to the top of the observation tower. From there they could admire the beautiful view of the whole Gdańsk and the surrounding woods. On December 11th we went further into the valley of Dolina Radości and towards the woods. Students told us about the Oliwa Stream, the water mills and especially the Water Smithy. We heard a fascinating story about the Mormon Palace.
Prof. Dunn noted the students were engaging, to the point that local people stopped to listen to their presentations. He also requested Nowak’s advice on how to incorporate her way of teaching into his home institution’s curriculum. Despite low temperatures and the snow, students and teachers were joyful and full of enthusiasm. Everybody had a great time in the beautiful landscape of Oliwa and its woods.