1 Julio, 2013
This week has taken some exciting turns! On Wednesday I will finally get to work directly with exchange students. Exchange students who have completed their time abroad in Chile will be returning to their home countries this week. They will be arriving from different areas of Chile, to Santiago this Wednesday and flying out to their home countries on Friday.
I have found that logistics have been a key factor when planning the departure process of students. Not only is it important to figure out who will be where and when, in order to insure that all students are picked up from the airport or bus terminal and brought to the hotel, but also another key factor of the departure process has been planning the departure orientation for students. After spending a year abroad in a Chile and adapting to its customs, it can be extremely difficult to return back to your home country. Therefore, along with going to get students and bringing them to the hotel, I will be working directly with them, to help them through the process and answer any questions that they have.
I can say that through this past week, one of the aspects that I am growing in, in my internship, is the ability to work in a group. Communication has been the key, in all the work that we have been collaborating in. Every day we tend to have at least one short meeting to touch bases on where we are at in our work, and what tasks we will be covering. I really enjoy working in a group, and the environment at the office. All of my colleagues have been really friendly, and helpful. In some sense I can say that the office works together like a big family. We also all eat our lunches together, since the office has its own kitchen and a huge table with enough room for everyone. This is enjoyable, since I feel like I belong where I am working. Also, I feel comfortable to ask questions and state my opinions since everyone is so open.
On another note, as much as I love my internship, I am having to adjust to the long hours and city life. Coming from a small town, an over packed metro and large crowds are tiring, but I find myself continuing to be motivated due to the commitment and passion that drives my colleagues to love their job. Everyday I continue to feel the same gratification knowing that I am part of the experience to give students the opportunity to study abroad in another country.
On a similar note, on my way home from work the other day, I ran into a group of Harvard students who are spending their time interning for an education program in Santiago. Hearing how much their experience to study and work abroad in Chile is changing them, made me re-embrace the beauty of intercultural exchanges. Also, I have enjoyed being able to share my knowledge on Chilean culture with foreigners that I meet, and introduce them to my friends in Santiago that I met from my exchange in high-school. The other day I was thinking of how crazy and beautiful it is to know that I have introduced friends from different countries to each other.
In this sense it makes me realize how world-peace could be created if globalization reaches a certain level. By creating international relations and friendships, you are able to understand their culture and become connected to their countries. Therefore, by having these connections you would never want to hurt them or their country. This concept explains why A.F.S. was founded right after world war 2; this organization had this same idea, that by creating international relations less wars would occur. Being able to realize and experience this first hand this week ,was an eye-opener for me and made me have a new appreciation for the organization.