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All blog posts are by University of Michigan students who have participated in a CGIS program. The following blogs are students studying abroad in Costa Rica.
Azia speaks on being Black in Costa Rica
Being a black woman abroad, I definitely felt seen. In all honesty, there were moments when I desired to be back home in an environment where it wasn’t shocking to see braids or a black woman. However, in Costa Rica I didn’t feel discriminated against. I just felt like I stood out a lot, which at times could be uncomfortable. However, this is something that happens to black women almost universally. I also had instances where people would touch my hair or ask questions about my braids. I didn’t mind that because I consider it harmless and I don’t mind talking about it. Still, it did get old.
Al reflects on his spring term in Costa Rica
A lot of traveling these last couple of days! I’m on the plane to Costa Rica now and even though I’m excited, I still feel a little apprehensive. I’m a serious homebody most of the time- I live in the Midwest and I love it. So leaving Traverse City yesterday, and Ann Arbor early (and I mean EARLY) this morning, I’ve had a little bit of an uneasy feeling. This is so outside my wheelhouse! But everyone in my family has lamented how they regret not studying abroad. So, I’m planning to make the most of it. I’m lucky enough to have received a scholarship to do the Food, Energy, and Water Systems course as my final class at U of M.
Sydney reflects on her spring term in Costa Rica
One of the first things I notice about my program in Costa Rica, is that our days start very early. We regularly have to get up at 6am in order to get ready, eat breakfast, and meet our group on time. This actually is not extremely difficult considering; 1) Costa Rica is two hours behind Eastern Standard Time, 2) the sun rises and sets very early, and 3) we are almost always woken up early by the cacophonous greetings of cicadas, howler monkeys and countless other creatures. Our first activity as a group is a tour of the campus that is housing us for the majority of the month. We drive around and see research plots on farms, cattle and other farm animals, aquaponic systems, banana trees, and biodigesters. There is so much to see.
Brandon reflects on his spring term in Costa Rica
I woke up on one of my first days in Costa Rica around five in morning to the sounds of howler monkeys and birds. Although the temperature was in the mid-seventies it felt cool which was a relief compared to the heat and humidity that we normally spent our days in. Breakfast was a mix of fresh fruit, gallo pinto, yogurt, eggs, and most importantly coffee. After eating our group set out to tour the facilities at EARTH.