Personal Reflection: Changes and Excitement for the near future!

Looking back on the semester, I realized that I have learned a significant amount since the beginning.  Looking back on previous blogs, I have noticed how much I actually got out of QU301.  Before writing the blogs, I had the opinion that they were going to be a burden to write. I thought that I would dread writing a blog every week about topics that I couldn’t choose.  However, I couldn’t have been more wrong.

I have learned so much by writing the blogs and actually enjoyed and was interested in what I was writing about.  Looking back, I have found that I’ve learned a tremendous amount throughout the semester.

Coming into QU301, I knew close to nothing about Nelson Mandela.  I knew he was the president of South Africa at one time and that was all.  After being assigned to read Long Walk To Freedom, my eyes have been forever opened.  Not only did this book portray Mandela’s autobiography, it gave insight to his life and the constant challenges and difficulties that came along with the fight for freedom.

Reading my first blog about Nelson Mandela to my last, I realize how much I have learned about him, his life, and the impact he made on South Africa.

“These specific sections directly relate to South Africa today.  Fighting for freedom was a long, treacherous journey for Nelson Mandela but in the end, it was worth it.  If Mandela gave up and succumbed to the government’s constant prevention, equality for blacks would not be the way it is today in South Africa.  Mandela made an enormous difference in the lives of the people and all of the terrible conditions that he lived through paid off in the end” (Madison, Blog 11)

As quoted in my blog post, I look up to Nelson Mandela greatly and respect him for everything he has done for the South African people.

In addition to learning about Nelson Mandela, I have learned how to write a proper blog and what information I should and shouldn’t include.  Each blog gave me more practice and by the end I am able to write a blog post about anything and everything with absolutely no problem.

Although I have enjoyed class time very much and have learned a tremendous amount, all semester I have been looking forward to the obvious highlight of the class – South Africa!  After preparing and researching our service projects, I utterly believe that this trip with change me.  I feel that it will give me a new perspective on life and open my eyes to the world around me.

When we go there and help the Varkplaas community and see the smiling faces on the kids, I think that I will be forever changed.  There isn’t a better feeling then knowing that you impacted somebody’s lives so greatly and I feel blessed to have the opportunity to do just that.

I have taken some steps to prepare myself mentally for this trip.  Although I know that it is going to be one of the best experiences of my life, I thought about the different culture and that I am stepping out of my comfort zone.

After playing the “Barnga Diversity” game in class, my mind opened to the differences between cultures and I realized how important it is to respect, understand, and be open minded to everything that South Africa has to offer.  After playing this game, I started to deliberately prepare myself for the trip.  I told myself how I must stay open and keep an open mind the entire time I am there.  I want to enjoy and experience everything I can and to be able to do this; I must respect and appreciate the differences among us.

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2 Comments on “Personal Reflection: Changes and Excitement for the near future!

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