Social issues like gaining access to education, earning a living, medical decisions, and human justice are universal. Learning how families, individuals, and groups of people do things in a non-US culture provides valuable perspective and helps you identify and address your own personal biases. Taking your studies abroad lets you explore the shared beliefs of a new culture. It broadens your understanding of human behaviors and how social systems work. It lets you compare aspects of social life like education reform and how family life differs and flourishes in other countries.
Taking classes related to my major and seeing them through an authentic Danish lens, among a culturally diverse group of students from around the world, was invaluable.
My goal was to learn more about Brazilian culture and history, something that is important to me as a Latin American and Latino Studies and Sociology double major. Being in a classroom with students from outside of California contributed to memorable experiences because we were all so different. We learned things about each other, our cultures, and our home countries. Each individual brought their own ideas and perspectives and the classroom was engaging and interactive. I also learned by exploring different parts of Rio, talking with locals, and trying different foods and activities.
My internship was the perfect fit because it aligned my academics as well as my career goals. I was able to apply what I was learning in class like how to avoid being gender biased in the activities and lessons I planned for my students. I have always wanted a future in education and this internship gave me more experience working with students and with lesson planning. It also broadened my career path by making working with nonprofit organizations an option for me.