Student Reflections on International Travel

2015 Student Field Reporter Project:  We’ve enlisted the help of several students to share their 2015 Costa Rica experiences with us. Over the coming months we will regularly feature their posts, photos, and reflections – letting them tell their amazing stories of Costa Rica and it’s impact on their lives!  

Reporter:  Jenna, student at Gateway High School

Looking back on my trip to Costa Rica, I can’t imagine what my life was like before going. The people in Costa Rica make you feel like you are home. Each person was eager to hear my broken Spanish and applauded me anytime I successfully executed a Spanish phrase. I often hear people in the

DSCN0685 (2)United States complain that people who come to the United States should speak English. That never sounded right to me and now I know how wrong it is. While I was in Costa Rica, I was on the outside. I was the foreigner who couldn’t speak the national language. Yet, not one person got angry with me for messing up words or using charades to get my point across. Not one person made me feel like I didn’t belong.

The people in Costa Rica helped me put my life into perspective. Nothing bothered them. Even in the searing heat they went to work with a smile. They loved their lives for the better and the worse. The children I met were just as loving. They soaked up everything I said as if they were a sponge and my DSCN0650words were water.

One young girl in particular stood out to me. She was about one year old. All the young girls at her school took turns taking care of her. This little girl never cried as she switched hands or as the sunbeams heated her cheeks. She didn’t cry when she ran across the field and fell down on her knee. She just got up and kept running. Even in this small baby, the Costa Rican way of life, the Pura Vida, had worked it’s way into her. She smiled, giggled and modeled in a hat for me.