At the end of it all, what is it we’re expected to have learned from this study abroad? That’s one of the main questions we are supposed to answer in the experience report that we’re required to write when we get back home.
The syllabus for this assignment lists several questions we might answer based on what we learned such as Who Am I? What Do I Value? How Do I Learn? What is My Worldview? And how Do These Connect?
These all seem like pretty big life questions to figure out completely in the course of seven weeks. Of course, I don’t expect to ever fully understand what these answers are, but I do think it is important to always be pursuing them. The way Jeff explained the assignment in our initial meetings made it sound like there was some grand plan that would make all of these answers come together in one pivotal moment. Ok, maybe I read into that a little too much.
I’m pretty sure if this was a movie it would end with one of those anti-climactic Wizard of Oz conclusions where the answer was actually with us all along.
On the other hand, I can feel the seeds of some ideas forming in my head. Ideas that I might take further when I return home. I feel a little weird writing that out here because I’d hate to be held accountable for something that never materializes. However, maybe that accountability is just the kind of motivation I need to actually put my ideas into action.
When it comes time to actually write my experience report, I already have a separate document on my computer with a list of things I’ve learned. Hopefully it will all stay relevant enough that by the time I return home it won’t all slip through my fingers and blow away like some trivial dust in the wind.
Also, I had the song Dust in the Wind playing in my head about a minute ago. So just like what Dorothy was looking for all along…I leave you with some Kansas.