The University of Iowa

Tagged with "disabilities abroad"

Diversity Ambassador Sydney Alexander

Student Reflections on Disabilities Abroad: Becoming Fearless in Italy

As a student with learning disabilities, routine and structure is something that I not only need, but that I like to change as little as possible. So as you can imagine, choosing to study abroad was one of the most adventurous, risky, and nerve-wracking decisions I’ve ever made. Flash forward to now: if you would have told me I would come back after just twelve weeks abroad a fearless, tenacious, culturally competent problem solver with a newly acquired travel addiction, I would have made the choice a long time ago.

Tips for balanced mental and physical health in China

Although both the Chinese government and public are increasingly aware of China’s high prevalence of depression, burnout, and milder mental health concerns, the topic is not commonly discussed on local campuses. Chinese students often do not divulge their mental health status to close friends and family, and from what I have observed, the newly-arrived international students who are eager to integrate, do not either.

Student Reflections on Disabilities: Escaping the comfort zone

I’ll admit here that when I was applying for the India Winterim Program and for this very scholarship, I had some doubts. I had convinced my family, friends, and professors that participating in the program would be beneficial, but inside I was nervous. Would I get homesick? How would I deal with being immersed in a new culture? Would my new classmates and travel companions like me? In spite of all my worry, I was accepted into the program, and after taking a deep breath, I confirmed my participation in the course

Student Reflections on Disabilities: A learning curve

When I first arrived in Wales I was nervous and a little scared. I had just taken a long journey across the ocean and was now standing in a city I knew virtually nothing about. I didn’t know how to get to the train station, to Swansea, nor the place I’d be living for the next five months. Fortunately, there were friendly people to help me out. Yes, I’m sure I looked silly dragging my bags around from bus to bus asking the driver exactly where it went but now I look back on it with pride. I had no idea what I was doing but I did it anyway and it all worked out. I made it to my flat and was exhausted!

Staff Reflections on Disabilities Abroad - Being Blind in Mexico

"What am I doing here?" That question plagued me on that hot September day in 1982 when I first set foot in the house where I would be living with other participants on a Central College study abroad program in Mérida, Mexico. Blind from birth, I was accustomed to quickly taking in and adapting to new environments. But the open spaces, high ceilings, and large rooms so typical of Mérida's colonial architecture made this place feel like anything BUT home.

Student Reflections on Disabilities: Visual Impairment

At the beginning I was very frustrated, I wish I would have been more prepared to answer questions. It was not easy explaining my impairments in another language. Also, I was not prepared for the doubt I would have to face from other people. I could see the worry in their eyes when I brought my bike home for the first time. The teachers would ask me everyday if the print in the book was too small. Looking back at it now, it was a tough first few weeks. I really had to give it my all in order to make people believe that I was fully capable of doing everything that a sighted person can do.