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Category Stories: Racial and Ethnic Identity

  • Finding Heritage in the Highlands

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    Finding Heritage in the Highlands

    I felt a deep connection to Scotland before arriving here. My grandfather was extremely proud of our Scottish heritage and made a point to talk about his love for this country and culture as frequently as possible. I was raised in the Presbyterian Church, the roots of which trace back to Scotland. There was even…

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  • Studying in Lima as a Peruvian-American

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    Studying in Lima as a Peruvian-American

    Alex, a fellow IFSA-Peru participant, is the daughter of Peruvian immigrants to the United States who spent several years in Lima as a young child. She chose study in Peru to fully assume her Peruvian identity and get to know her family’s origins. Two months in, she shared her reflections.    Growing up Peruvian in the…

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  • Exploring My Mexican Identity in Mexico

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    Exploring My Mexican Identity in Mexico

    I am the child of immigrants and a first-generation student. My parents moved to the United States from México before I was born. They wanted me to live where I would have opportunities they didn’t have growing up, to get a better education and live a better life. My mother believed in my future, so she…

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  • Exploring African-American Identity in London

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    Exploring African-American Identity in London

    During spring semester of my junior year, I travelled beyond American borders for the first time in my life, to London. Living in London both challenged and deepened my understanding of my identity as a black American. In the classroom, black students were still very underrepresented at King’s College, but London itself is one of…

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  • Exploring Family Roots and Exotification in China

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    Exploring Family Roots and Exotification in China

    I have always wanted to come to China. Listening to the stories my grandfather told about his childhood here and wondering about the ones he didn’t share, I felt I owed it to my blood to try and understand some of Chinese culture. What did my Grandpa feel on his way to the Philippines and…

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  • A Black Man in China

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    A Black Man in China

    Being abroad in China has taught me so many things about myself. I am a Black male from America, a first-generation college student raised in a middle class, mixed family. This may not seem important, but the diversity in my family is something many Chinese did not understand, and often caused a lot of confusion. …

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  • Fish Out of Water: Navigating Glasgow as an African Caribbean

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    Fish Out of Water: Navigating Glasgow as an African Caribbean

    Early Stages Since my early high school days I dreamt of studying abroad, whether that be in Japan, India, Lithuania, or somewhere else it didn’t matter; I wanted to see the world. Coming from an immigrant working middle class family from the Caribbean, I didn’t have the luxury of exploring outside the country, much less…

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  • Step Out of Your Comfort Zone. Study Abroad.

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    Step Out of Your Comfort Zone. Study Abroad.

    Step Out of Your Comfort Zone. Study Abroad. Last week, and while I was on a video call with my sister, I came to a rather interesting realization. As my eyes wandered around the room behind me through the screen, I noticed one of my suitcases could be seen through the frame. On it, I…

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  • How to Navigate Study Abroad as an International Cambodian Student

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    How to Navigate Study Abroad as an International Cambodian Student

    How I Navigate Study Abroad as An International Cambodian Student Why I Go Abroad? Despite the cancellation of my previous program and the fact that I am in the middle of a pandemic, I did not give up on study abroad. I got asked “why Ireland? Why study abroad when you are already abroad? Why…

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  • How I Gained an Understanding of Chinese Culture through Food

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    How I Gained an Understanding of Chinese Culture through Food

    Upon arriving in China, the one aspect of my semester abroad that I was particularly excited about was the cuisine. Having spent most of my life growing up in the US, my perception of authentic Chinese food was characterized by cinematic imagery and the special dishes my mother would prepare during the holidays. Therefore, my…

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