My experience with Asociacion CREAR has allowed me to see the important role of offering services to others that may help people achieve upward mobility. With the skills learned from Asociacion CREAR I am confident that I can work alongside other communities in Latin America through the Foreign Service or any NGO in their communities. This opportunity would have not been possible for me without the Social Science Scholars program and I am incredibly grateful for those that facilitated this experience.
Without the generous funding and informative leadership seminar that Social Science Scholars provided me with, interning with an organization abroad would have been unimaginable. I am so thankful for the summer experience of living and working in rural Costa Rica. Through this trip, I was able to directly impact the communities of Playa Samara and El Torito by engaging the children in lessons that contribute to their personal growth. Interning with La Asociacion CREAR has also provided me with an intercultural experience that has allowed me to view the world through a new perspective.
Frankly speaking, most students don’t want to take math classes. I’m sure most of my students can recall vowing to never take another math class again after their Algebra 2 finals in high school. Imagine their disappointment when they learned that my Social Statistics course was a requirement needed to earn their undergraduate sociology degree….
Since the course began in 2012, FSU has held several symposiums on Hip Hop and Education, a two day “Hip Hop is Life” event focused on health and numerous panels and workshops on Hip Hop and Social Change. We have hosted film screenings and dozens of guest speakers including Christopher “Play” Martin (Kid n Play), recording artist Dee-1 and Dead End Hip Hop. These events are always open to the University and to the Tallahassee community.
Imagine having to constantly defer to people who mis-identify you, just to make it through your day. Now imagine doing it day, after day, after day.
In the years to follow the first Thanksgiving, the holiday was only sporadically recognized. The early presidents proclaimed days of Thanksgiving, but the federal government stopped recognizing the holiday in the early nineteenth-century. It was only in amidst the national disunity of the Civil War that Lincoln re-established the holiday as a means to reaffirm a sense of national unity. In this context, the story of the original Thanksgiving garnered new meaning, representing an ideal of people sharing a land together in spite of their differences.
From this experience I developed an interest in issues such as state policy capture, in which policy decisions are directed away from the public interest towards a specific interest and can undermine democratic values and trust in government. My summer experience has served to empower me achieve my goals of one day conducting research, writing, and lobbying for policy which protects civil liberties and mainstreams human rights with a regional focus of the Middle East and North Africa. I intend continue my education to assist in similar endeavors and high-level policy research and analysis at a broader level.
Due to the funding provided by the Social Science Scholars, and in particular my donor Marshall Cohn, I had some of the best experiences to last me a lifetime. I traveled to the former capitol Ayutthaya, went snorkeling in some of the clearest oceans I’ve ever seen, and even joined a football league (soccer in the U.S.). I’ve tried dishes I can’t pronounce and sang karaoke to Japan’s greatest hits. I’ve laughed with some really funny and kind people, and I’ve cried with those same people. Words can’t put into context the journey and fulfillment this opportunity has offered. I’m truly humbled to have had this experience and I believe it has changed me as a person.
Change will only come when we decide to take the first step. As social innovators, we must be bold enough to believe in the future we hope to create yet be humble enough to understand that most change happens slowly and, as such, we must remain steadfast. Complex social issues defy simple, straightforward solutions; they demand a deep understanding, our best ideas, a willingness to collaborate, and a long-term commitment. The Bali Immersion experience added an entirely unique and comprehensive layer to my undergraduate education, and I cannot imagine my time at Florida State without it.
Those who study aging have known for decades that the effects of population aging are most visible in the growing proportion of the population requiring everyday care and assistance, usually by family members. If we aspire to be a society that values families, we need to do a better job supporting the needs of caregivers, particularly those who are the most vulnerable.