Professor Polack
Professor Polack, a distinguished computer science professor at the University of Mary Washington, possesses a deep curiosity for global exploration. Driven by a desire to broaden her understanding of different cultures and technological landscapes, she aspires to study abroad in countries across the world. Professor Polack's ambition to study abroad exemplifies her commitment to enriching both his own academic perspectives and the field of computer science as a whole.
View UMW Trip 2024
Iceland, where we spent weeks exploring the stunning landscapes of this Nordic island. One of the highlights of the trip was driving around the famous ring road, a 1,332-kilometer highway that circles the entire country. Along the way, we marveled at cascading waterfalls, rugged coastlines, and towering glaciers. We had the chance to immerse yourself in Icelandic culture, sampling traditional cuisine and learning about the country's history and geology. This unforgettable journey through Iceland's dramatic beauty left a lasting impression all of us.
View UMW Trip 2023
After leading a study abroad trip to Brazil and Argentina, where the students explored the wonders of the Amazon Rainforest, embarked on a captivating river cruise along the Amazon, and marveled at the breathtaking Iguazu Falls from both sides of the border, Professor Polack decided to create a photo book. With meticulous attention to detail, he curated a collection of photographs capturing the vibrant landscapes, fascinating wildlife, and joyous moments of the trip. I aimed to provide a visual narrative that would forever remind the students of their remarkable journey.

Icelandic Food Diaries

Exploring Icelandic snack foods is like going on a tasty adventure, where every bite is a surprise waiting to be discovered. From salty to sweet, Iceland has snacks for every craving. Whether you’re munching on the famous licorice, crunching on local potato chips, or enjoying creamy skyr-based treats, each snack gives you a peek into Iceland’s yummy world. So let’s dive in and explore all the delicious snacks Iceland has to offer!

One of the snacks we tried was fish jerky! Fish jerky is a popular snack in Iceland, made by drying strips of fish until they become chewy and flavorful. It’s a traditional food that has been enjoyed for generations, providing a convenient and portable source of protein for fishermen and travelers alike. With its savory taste and unique texture, fish jerky offers a delicious way to experience the flavors of the sea while on the go. Whether enjoyed on its own or paired with other Icelandic treats, fish jerky is a tasty and satisfying snack that showcases Iceland’s culinary heritage.

This was us trying fish jerky. While fish jerky is a beloved snack for many, not everyone finds its flavor and texture appealing. For some, the strong taste of dried fish can be off-putting, while others may find the chewy texture less satisfying than other types of jerky. I personally did not like the fish jerky and Kaylie didn’t either.

On the other hand, Chenin and Abby actually liked the fish jerky. For those who appreciate the savory delights of fish jerky, each bite offers a burst of flavor that transports them to the shores of Iceland. The rich taste of dried fish, infused with hints of salt and sea breeze, is a culinary delight that leaves taste buds tingling with satisfaction.

Another food that we tried was Kropp! Kropp is like a little taste of heaven from Iceland! It’s basically these crunchy corn puffs covered in yummy chocolate. When you bite into one, you get that awesome mix of crispy and creamy all at once. It’s the perfect snack to munch on when you need a little pick-me-up during the day or just want something sweet to treat yourself with. Plus, they’re so tasty, you’ll want to keep popping them in your mouth!

Each bite is like a party in your mouth—first, you crunch down on the corn puff, then you taste the sweet chocolate coating. It’s so good that you’ll want to keep snacking on them all day long. Whether you’re relaxing at home or out exploring, Kropp is the perfect snack to satisfy your cravings!

I actually really liked Kropp. I had had corn puffs and chocolate before, but I had never thought of combining the two. This is definitely a snack that should be brought over to the United States because I am sure it would be a favorite!

We also tried paprika curls! Icelandic Paprika Curls are these yummy potato snacks that have a bit of a spicy kick. They’re like little crunchy curls seasoned with paprika, so they’re super flavorful. When you bite into one, you get that satisfying crunch followed by a zesty paprika taste that’s just right. Whether you’re chilling at home or out and about, these curls are the perfect snack to munch on whenever you need a little pick-me-up. And trust me, once you start snacking on them, you won’t be able to stop!

When we tried the paprika curls it was right after trying the fish jerky, so I thoroughly enjoyed it! It somewhat washed away the fish jerky taste that was left in my mouth. As you pop one of these crispy curls into your mouth, you’re hit with the irresistible combination of crunchy texture and zesty paprika seasoning.

It was super fun to get random snacks at convenience stores and try them with my van. Sometimes, we would grab something without knowing what it was and just try it so we could get a taste of some Icelandic foods!

One of the last foods that I am going to highlight is the Icelandic hotdogs! These were probably my favorite foods I had while I was in Iceland. I ended up going to the hotdog stand 5 times in the 2 days we were in Reykjavik!

Icelandic hot dogs are not your average dogs—they’re a culinary delight that’s earned a special place in the hearts (and stomachs) of locals and visitors alike. Made from a blend of lamb, pork, and beef, these juicy sausages are grilled to perfection and served on a steamed bun with a variety of toppings. From crispy fried onions and sweet mustard to tangy remoulade sauce and crunchy raw onions, Icelandic hot dogs are all about the toppings, each adding its own unique flavor and texture to the experience. Whether enjoyed as a quick bite on the go or as a late-night snack after a night of revelry, Icelandic hot dogs are a must-try treat that captures the essence of Icelandic street food culture in every mouthwatering bite.

When we went here, they asked if I wanted “everything” on the hotdog, which I had no idea what that meant, but I still said yes, and it was the best thing I could’ve said. I loved everything that was on the hotdog and would recommend that anyone who goes to Iceland should try these! I also think everyone should just try random things even if they don’t look very good!