Blog By Lorena Andrea Marulanda, Community Psychology, Gender, Culture and Human Rights in India
This is my first time writing a blog in English, so I am so sorry if I make any mistake. However, at the same time it is a representation of me as an immigrant whose first language is not English. So here is the process that I wanted to have before and during my time in India.
Process before your trip…
This is a process that we should all enjoy, although it is stressful, once you get the congratulation letter everything will have a different face :).
For this I do not have much to say more than be yourself. If you do not know something it is okay to say it, you do not need to have a perfect answer. From this, you will learn (like I did) to be okay with who you are with your answers even if they sound silly sometimes. For a while I was worried that I was not going to be selected for the program because of some of my answers, but I got the good news and that opinion about myself changed…
…and if you are wondering about the picture in my congratulation letter, yes we took it while in India!
If you are like me and do not read the instructions, you are going to be very frustrated. For this, you will need:
- A picture of yourself with a white background. What I did… I took a picture of my passport picture and change the size of the picture to what it was required and it work!
- A clear picture of your passport
I thought it was going to be easier, so please take your time to do at once. However, if for some reason you can not finish it when you started it DO NOT FORGET to write down your application ID number which is on the middle top of the page. It happened to me, and I had to start over again and learn the hard way.
These were the mistakes I did while filling out the application:
- DO NOT write your social security or your driver license enter NA.
- DO NOT use punctuation marks. If your name is hyphenated then use a black space instead. Do not use a period if your name has a sux such as “Jr.”
- AND write the address as they show it even though the space is not long enough. Copy and paste what they give you, and if it does not fit IT IS OKAY!
…and here goes your first investment on your trip $61.50 for you visa!
DO NOT WAIT TILL LAST MINUTE…
Go to the doctor as soon as possible so you will know what your insurance is able to cover. If you do not have insurance Bartell Drugs store and Walgreens offer the service of the immunizations that are required to enter to India. Bartell Drugs have an international nurse that will help you with the research and the decision with some the ones that are optional (malaria).
Hepatitis A $139
For me, my insurance covered the Hepatitis A, and with my doctor we decided that I was not going to take anything for Malaria. However, I paid for the Typhoid at the community clinic in North Gate and I paid $76.78, so it was more convenient.
DO NOT FORGET to ask your doctor for CIPROFLOXACIN for traveler’s diarrhea. Most insurances cover this. WHAT I DID TO NOT USE IT… I was really worried about getting sick during India, so my cousin who traveled to Nepal recommended to take probiotics as much as possible BEFORE and DURING the trip. I was eating two yogurts everyday, kombucha, and I bought some probiotic pills called “Pearls Complete” that he recommended. I got them through Amazon for $15.49…. and I never got sick of my stomach!