The feeling of graduation has not quite set in yet. The culmination of four years of hard work, group projects and friendships has taught me invaluable lessons. They have grown me, shaped the person I am today. As I prepare for the next chapter in life with Rice’s GMI program, while many uncertainties lie ahead, I am certain of one thing– I will have one the most unique experiences of my life.
I grew up in Texas all my life. Although I do not wear cowboy boots, ten-gallon hats or ride a horse to school, make no mistake, I am 100% Texan. I say words like “y’all” or “ain’t”, words that really make no sense (and make many of my non-Texan friends angry) but to a Texan, are words of endearment. There are many similarities in Costa Rican culture that I feel will help me feel more comfortable. The “pura vida” lifestyle is not much unlike the slower way of life in the South. Immersing myself in a foreign culture such as Costa Rica’s will however take some getting used to at first. Being surrounded by new faces and a language in Spanish that has not be utilized since my High School days will be a unique challenge, but to have the opportunity to be a tico for three months and work alongside the engineers and students there will be such an enriching and eye-opening experience.
There is less than a week left before our cohort heads out to Costa Rica. There are a few things we still need to prepare for. Dr. Van Vleeck will be instructing us on group dynamics and leadership. Hopefully the things we will learn at boot camp over the course of two days will prove to be invaluable in Costa Rica.