Recipient of the Joshua Haglund Memorial Peace Scholarship
“When I first arrived in India I was overwhelmed, but the staff at MSID made themselves available to all of us and my host family was extremely gracious... Their kind-heartedness and giving nature was more than I could have asked for in a homestay, and they made it hard for me to miss home much.”
Tell Us About Your Program
My program began in Jaipur, Rajasthan, where I stayed with a family just a ten minute walk away from our school. For the month of August I took intense Hindi sessions which helped me throughout the rest of my semester in India as I was studying, interning, traveling, and doing daily shopping and site-seeing. After the first month, more students arrived for the six-week classroom phase in which we learned about the history and culture of India and continued studying Hindi.
How Were You Affected by the People and Culture?
The staff at MSID made themselves available to all of us and my host family was extremely gracious with their time and understanding as I adjusted to their culture. Their kind-heartedness and giving nature was more than I could have asked for in a homestay, and they made it hard for me to miss home much.
By the end of my time in India I was more than comfortable riding public transit (trains, rickshaws, even airplanes) without any assistance from MSID staff or my host family. I enjoyed nearly a month traveling the western coast of India and visiting some of India’s diverse states such as Kerala and Goa. I got to meet travelers from all over the world, making friends from Sweden and South Africa, and swapping stories with many more.
What Did You Learn from Your Internship?
At the end of the six week classroom phase I selected to work with an education focused NGO called Bodh Shiksha Samiti just outside of Jaipur. I instantly felt at home at Bodh and was able to use my creative abilities to broaden their public appearance. During my time at Bodh, my knowledge of India and the country’s struggle to develop in the educational sector was greatly enriched through conversations with Bodh’s amazing staff. I was able to secure an internship with the Minnesota Public Interest Research Group in Minneapolis due to my work with Bodh Shiksha Samiti, which has given me a lot of confidence as I know that I’m working to improve society in some way.