Tuesday, April 21, 2009

WEEK 10: Mexican Students Come to Cuernavaca

This week at CEMAL we had the chance to host the UNAM (National Autonomous University of Mexico) Social Work students from Mexico City. This week gave us all a chance to interact with students who are in the same, or nearly the same, stage in their life and school experience as us. Although five days is a short period of time to get to know people, I feel we all enjoyed the others´ company and walked away with new experiences.

Students Comparing and Contrasting the Challenges and Benefits of Social Work Between Mexico and the United States.
While we CGE students went on with our typical days of classes and internships, the UNAM students had a chance to listen to some of our professors. Both of our groups also had the chance to come together and hear some great speakers during this week.

One of the great speakers that I remember from this week was an Afro-Mexican woman. Her talk was about Afro-Mexicanos, and what it is like growing up as an Afro-Mexicana. She talked with us about what it was like growing up in her family, being a part of school, and her adult life now with her children. This was a very touching story for me, and I enjoyed learning about something I knew very little about.

On Thursday night we had the chance to hear from several speakers on a panel. They spoke to us about sexual diversity and being an activist for sexual diversity in their communities. This was also very interesting for me to listen to because I had heard many speakers on this topic back home in Minnesota, but it was great to hear the differences between Mexico and the United States.
UNAM Students Teaching Us Their School Cheer.

All together this was a great week for our two individual groups to come together and learn from one another. They shared with us their experiences and knowledge of social work, as did we. It was also great to be able to learn something new together from the many speakers.

--By Amber Mullenbach

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