Uncovering the Meaning Behind the Flag

Walking down the streets of Cusco me and my friends were shocked to see rainbow flags flying everywhere. On every corner and in front of every business there was a flag flying, including in the main square at the center of town. We thought we finally had found the holy grail of LGBTQ+ inclusivity.

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First Time Backpacking

After the stressful weeks leading up to finals I received a long week off from school. During our break the ISA program that I am traveling with planned an excursion to the cities of Ica and Paracas. This excursion was only two days and one night long, we still had a whole week ahead of us with no classes and no activities. This was a perfect opportunity to extend our travel and explore more of Peru. A few of us planned to stay behind in Paracas to continue our journey. Continue reading

Why Am I Wasting Time? [Vlog]

I like to keep myself busy but I find lying in bed dreading leaving my pillow. As the minutes go by, I lay on my pillow with regret of not getting up and exploring the city…and the cycle repeats itself.

Watch Brooke’s new Vlog below!

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Group Projects: Will We Ever Communicate? [Vlog]

Group Projects have been one on the most challenging and frustrating things here in Paris. I have been trying to adjust to the customs of the students and observe their behavior to get an understanding, but everyone is so different and in their own world at times. My university in particular does a lot of group assignments where as at Marymount University we have a lot of essays and a few group assignments. My key to success and getting through this semester is patience.

Watch Brooke’s video below:

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I’ve Been Vegetarian for 3 Weeks!

So, I have not been vegetarian completely. I have indulged in some chicken, beef and fish a handful of times. Changing diets so quickly was a lot more simple than I thought it would be. Although I have rejected many food combinations I have been very open to the way my host family eats.

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Lost in Frenchlation [Vlog]

Being lost in the French language has really pushed me to break down my own barriers. My fears that I will be looked at as an ignorant American that only thinks the world revolves around the United States and English. I actuality, I took 3 years of Spanish in high school, but for some of us we barely remember anything. I’ve been holding myself back from learn for many reasons…now I don’t have a reason. Yes, people will look at you funny or joke but at the end you’ll be proving them wrong. I won’t be saying “désole je ne parle pas français” much longer.

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Being Black abroad: Do you see yourself?

In this blog post, I am specifically writing to my minority readers.

As you begin to settle into the routine of life abroad, you begin to look around. You become aware of the people around you. The realization that there is no one around that looks like you hits you. For me, this means every single room I walk into, I am the darkest person with the coarsest hair. I immediately stand out.  Continue reading

It’s The Little Things

There is the saying “You don’t know what you have ‘till it’s gone” and that is just a fact of life. Especially when you are living outside of a country and the norms and cultures are very different from what you are used to. Depending on where you are living, you can sometimes miss the things that you are so used to seeing in your everyday life. Continue reading

Para-Panamerican Games!

To be completely honest, before coming to Peru, I did not know the Panamerican games existed.  I don’t think I would have even known what the Panamericans were if they were not hosted in Peru this year. All around the streets of Jesus Maria, I would see banners with the hashtag #jugamostodos and have no idea what the sign meant. Our program coordinator finally explained what the games were, and every meeting she would mention the games and how cheap the tickets were. Continue reading

Your Experience Is Not a Stereotype [Vlog]

Your Experience is not a Stereotype is about not allowing your perception or some else’s perception on the world around you change how you experience a world outside your comfort zone. This concept can be applied to numerous scenarios. It is okay to be frightened it is normal, but keep an open mind.

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The Connection of Food to Italy

When I decided to study abroad, one the first things I was really excited to see or rather taste was the food. Nothing ties more countries together than food and to be able to share it with other people and sharing various dishes are some of the few ways to experience cultures without a language barrier. Wanting to be a chef when I was younger has made me appreciate food and taste from different cultures without being picky. Continue reading

Who Discovered America

The Native American population is arguably one of the most underrepresented populations in the United States. In the US 2% of the population is Native American compared to Peru’s 25.7% indigenous population. While there is a significant difference in the amount of indigenous people in the US, there are also significant differences in how both Peru and the United States treat their indigenous community. Continue reading

“You are Missing Out on So Much Food”

To be completely honest, being a vegetarian in a Latin American country is not ideal. While in North America we have a huge vegan and vegetarian movement, the movement has not quite picked up the same momentum in South America. While it is a struggle, it is definitely not impossible. Continue reading

“Studying Abroad is Basically a Vacation, Right?”

The typical study abroad student posts beautiful pictures on Instagram of the beach. On their snapchat story they include the geo-tag of the cool location they are visiting that weekend. Friends comment “live your best life”, hyping up each and every picture vicariously living through their experience.This all contributes to the perception that studying abroad is a semester long vacation. As much as I wish I could write about life changing trips to the beach sipping margaritas on a Tuesday afternoon, I can’t. Continue reading