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Meet Our Mexico Resident Director

Diana Arízaga, Mexico Resident Director

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  • WHAT DO YOU ENJOY MOST ABOUT BEING A RESIDENT DIRECTOR?
  • Being part of a transformation. Observing how students process information and appropriate other cultures without even realizing they are doing it.
  • WHAT IS THE MOST IMPORTANT THING STUDENTS LEARN IN MEXICO?
  • Patience, to be more flexible, realizing there is life beyond the U.S. and the different pace of life.
  • WHAT IS ONE LITTLE-KNOWN FACT ABOUT MEXICO?
  • Contrary to popular belief, The Mayan decline does not mean they have disappeared! The Mayan culture, language and traditions are very much alive and kicking.
  • WHAT ARE SOME UNIQUE ASPECTS ABOUT MEXICO?
  • Mexico is an amazing country, full of contrasts, rich history, wonderful food and interesting traditions. Despite the current situation, it is worth getting to know. Mérida, located in the Southeast of the country is still, in my opinion, waiting to be discovered. This city is a living laboratory of the ancient Mayan with the contemporary ones. The Mayan influence is present everywhere: architecture, food, traditions and rituals and this, mixed in with the non-Mayan: Spanish descent, Lebanese and Mestizo populations, make for an incredibly diverse and interesting place.
  • WHAT'S THE GREATEST THING ABOUT STUDYING IN MÉRIDA?
  • Mérida and the Yucatán are about the safest places in the world. Our students feel very secure and comfortable here.
  • WHAT ARE SOME OF THE CHALLENGES OF YOUR JOB?
  • The current state of things, with Mexico being so much in the news for the wrong reasons. My biggest challenge has been trying to very intentionally change the narrative of war and destruction, to one where we can showcase and try to focus on the good things about this place. We still have beautiful sunsets on the water, are able to taste the freshest of foods and discover beautiful things and peoples that will warmth our hearts with their actions. Just trying to see beyond the negative and focus on the amazing and the positive. This can be very exhausting at times.
  • WHAT'S THE MOST AMAZING PLACE YOU'VE EVER VISITED?
  • Katmandu in Nepal and the Galapagos Islands.
  • WHAT DO YOU DO WHEN YOU'RE NOT BUSY WORKING WITH STUDENTS?
  • I travel, which is my absolute passion. I also like to read a good book, cook for friends, share a great conversation and eat. There is nothing like having a fresh ceviche by the ocean!
  • WHAT'S THE ONE THING STUDENTS SHOULD PACK FOR MEXICO?
  • Flexibility, a positive attitude and a great sense of humor. Everything else, you can find here.
  • Visit Diana's page on our social network
  • Visit our Mexico resident office website
 
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