Alexandra Buffalohead - 2012 Program Participant
Why did you decide to study abroad?
I decided to study abroad because I have heard so many stories from my grandpa, aunt, and uncle about their experiences and wanted to have my own adventures. When visiting Augsburg when I was a senior in high school I knew that I wanted to venture out of our country. Whether it be in high school, or college, meeting students who were studying abroad and hearing their stories encouraged me, and drove me to learning more about how I could study abroad.
Why did you choose Crossing Borders: Gender and Social Change program?
I chose the Center for Global education program to Cuernavaca, because I have heard nothing but great experiences from this program. I have studied Spanish since I was in first grade, and learned that the location of this program was going to be in the mecca of Mexican art, and close to the home of Frida Kahlo – I had to sign up. The weather and climate was also a contributing factor.
What makes the program you participated in so interesting?
I think what makes the program so interesting is that I felt like I was constantly learning inside the classroom and out. It wasn’t like we weren’t just reading out of textbooks, we were hearing the stories directly from the people, or going to the place we were learning about and seeing it such as a mural or pyramid etc. I loved that when we heard speakers they were from different perspectives so we were able to get both sides, and were able to form our own opinions and truly change how we think which made this program special.
What is the best thing about your program that future participants need to know?
I think what future participants need to know about this program is that this truly is a very important, special, learning experience that they are going to have and to enjoy every second of it; the good and the bad. I also think its important for students to realize the importance of their presence.
What’s one thing you would have done differently?
One thing that I would have done differently is studied abroad for a longer period of time. I would have also liked to have explored Mexico City more, because there is so much to see and do you need some time just to see the main street Paseo de la Reforma and the Zócalo. I have never seen so many museums in one weekend.
Now that you’re home, how has study abroad impacted your life?
Studying abroad has impacted my life a lot. Everyday the way I think, I know is different than before my experience. There are things that people around me say and I challenge it from my experience. I find myself wanting to practice and keep up my Spanish with friends and new friends. I also catch myself watching the Spanish channel, and Mexican and Spanish films pretty often. I would have to say that from my experience my diet has changed, I no longer like American food as much and always crave tacos al pastor, or tinga. I can’t wait to return to Cuernavaca!