Pre-Departure

Blog by Esther Wambui Ndungu, Pre-Major (Business), Critical Perspectives on Ecotourism in Tanzania

Esther IASA 2

As I was looking through the Study Abroad program countries listed on the school website, I knew I was interested in studying abroad in Africa, particular Kenya, where I am originally from. However, the program in Kenya had to do with medical work, something not in my field of my interest. So I looked for another Study Abroad opportunity in a different African county, Tanzania.

The name of the program I will be participating in is Critical Perspectives on Ecotourism in Tanzania. Although we will focus on Ecotourism implications on the Tanzania, we will also focus on Community Development. That is where my field of interest is. I am currently starting my sophomore year this summer quarter. My intended major in Business Administration. I want to focus on Community Development as a Social Entrepreneur. Study Abroad is a great way for me to travel and get insight on how people work to make the world a better place. During the program, we will be meeting with different grassroots organizations and leaders of the community. I will get an hands-on education, beyond the textbook. When I come back to US, I will continue getting hands-on learning through Community Based Learning.

Another valuable part of this Study Abroad experience is the fact that I will be able to experience a different culture and perspective on life. This is paramount in order of me to be a well rounded person. It will be so refreshing to be outside of US for a few weeks, about one and a half months. I will also be able to go back to my country Kenya before and after the program. Nairobi, Kenya is about four and a half hours bus ride away from Arusha, Tanzania. I plan on landing in Kenya five day before the program, spend time with family, then bus to Tanzania for the Study Abroad program, the bus back to Kenya, visit family for six days, then fly back to US. I am so exited to see my extended family again. Kenya will be so different than I had left it almost nine years ago. It is going to be wonderful! I get to travel to two different countries, that is a big plus! I will be back a day before school starts, I know I will be exhausted from the flight, but I don’t want to come back any earlier.

I will make friends with the Tanzanian host culture very well. I already know Swahili, because I am Kenyan, and so it will be much easier for me to connect with them at a deeper level. I do not have any fears or anxiety for participating in this Study Abroad program. I am looking forward to the trip of a lifetime!

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