Name: Sarah Elizabeth Jones, Class of 2020
Program: CIEE Arts and Sciences: Cape Town, South Africa, Spring 2019
Fields of Study: Political Economy, Africana Studies
How did studying abroad affect your academic and/or professional career?
I conducted an independent study under the supervision of a faculty member at the University of Cape Town. This opened my eyes to the opportunities of how academia can be used as a tool to highlight issues and as a form of political activism.
How did you explore your hobbies, interests, and passions abroad?
I explored my passions abroad by connecting with my fellow South African students and students from across the continent. Being someone of the African diaspora without much knowledge of my roots on the continent, my friends welcomed me into their culture and taught me that being African went beyond a place of birth.
Why would you recommend your respective abroad program or location?
Cape Town is filled with individuals who care deeply about each other and want to see people grow. I suggest this program because you are provided with the chance to decolonize your mind both in and out of the classroom.
What should students consider when applying and preparing for their time abroad?
Keep in mind that Cape Town is filled with various sites to explore, so many that you cannot visit all of them even in one semester. I would encourage people to explore the southern region of Africa: Botswana, Zimbabwe, etc.
Share a story about a time you experienced cultural immersion.
Cape Town is filled with many different cultures. One of my housemates, who is Ethiopia, showed me the essence of her cultures (Ethiopian and East African). I attended East African Society events with her and shared multiple communal style dinners with her at our favorite Ethiopian restaurant. Because of her, I have a deep respect and connection with her people and culture.