Belongings packed, tickets purchased, visa at hand, and I’m all ready to check out soon. By God’s grace, I’m ready to fly out for a year in Italy and the Philippines. Although exhilarated with the adventure, I’m still a tad bit nervous with what I’ll encounter when I arrive.
For the past year, I was grateful with the chance to travel to North and South Eastern Asia. The experience to travel, try out different cuisines, and developing friendships were all part of the process of immersing myself within a new culture. However, as I returned to America and further my understanding on international education through the IPSL graduate program, I gradually had a different retrospect of what it means to be a global citizen.
According to Building Peace Organization, “A global citizen is someone who identifies with being part of an emerging world community and whose actions contribute to building this community’s values and practices.”In relation to what is being stated, my personal definition of traveling eventually changed over time. Traveling for me conveys a more deeper meaning than trying out different ethnic dishes, listening to different types of music, and touring all the well-known places. These components are as essentially important with exposing yourself to a new culture, but they are not enough to bridge the understanding of cultural differences, stereotypes and barriers that exists within our society today.
Our society and generation is rapidly changing over time and becoming more diverse. University students are traveling the world while immigrants are migrating to a foreign land for a better opportunity. With the constant changes, I personally believe everyone, for the most part, needs a place to call home.
“…on the run too long and it’s time to let it be. A place they belong filled with people who support them on the journey of life …going back to the neighborhood where the love is always free. It doesn’t matter where you’ve come from, and it doesn’t matter what you’ve seen, You’ll find a few who get through to you and give you what you need. As long as you know that you’re never alone…” Be More Barrio
I’ll soon be placed in a foreign country and be exposed to a new culture and language- something I’ll have to readjust to once again. As nervous as I am, I’ve decided to come with a clean slate and have no expectations mentality. Throughout my time in these two sites, I’ll be doing research and conducting my studies with promoting the understanding of international education through the use of studying abroad. The next BIG question is, “How do I return and become a global citizen within my community?”In other words, how can I “be more barrio while advocating for inclusion and community across a globalized society?” Well, the answer and proposals shall be revealed through time. Until then, please keep in tune with my thoughts and ramblings through my blog!
Be More Barrio and keep loving,