After being back in the US for
about 2 months I have had time to reflect on my journey and I just wanted to
share a couple of my thoughts with you. I want to start off by saying that it
is honestly hard to be back in Huntington Beach. The first few days were great.
Seeing old friends and places made me happy, yet I felt as if I was only
visiting and that my home was still Garopaba, Brasil. I have also felt a
feeling of moving backwords. I’ve been gone for 8 months learning about myself and
changing in ways I never would’ve imagined. And now I’m home in what I now look
at as a bubble with no more places to explore, no new culture to understand,
and no foreign language to speak. I’ve had a couple friends come home, but
things aren’t the same. They can all relate about college parties and classes
(which are hard for me to find interesting) while I’m left on the side trying
to throw in little stories about my time in Brasil. I find myself talking about
Brasil a lot but then realizing that the only people that can relate to me or
on opposite corners of the world.
I really do not want this post to be negative
I am just trying to be as honest as I can about my thoughts and feelings
because I would not trade this experience for anything. This is by far the BEST
decision I have made in my life. I am more motivated, confident, and happier
than ever before. I am the most comfortable I have ever felt in my own skin.
And I am living my life and working toward my personal goals.
want to explain the importance of bridge year programs like Global Citizen Year
in our society. I believe that in many ways they are the future of education.
If you look at top universities across the nation, they are one by one adopting
the idea of global studies. As the world becomes more and more globalized, the
need for global perspective has skyrocketed in importance. So for all who are
reading, I hope that you can help break the stigma around gap years and support
those who are interested in taking unconventional education paths. Mark Twain
said, “Whenever you find yourself on the side of the majority, it’s time to
pause and reflect.”
I have also made a video of my time in Brasil
if you were curious of what I was doing
If you can, please visit donate.globalcitizenyear.org/chrisiba
and donate to my Fundraising Campaign. Even a dollar makes a huge difference!