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Oswego Going Global. SUNY Oswego 2012 Kilimanjaro Team Reflections. Oswego Going Global.

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oswego going global

Oswego Going Global

SUNY Oswego 2012 Kilimanjaro Team Reflections

oswego going global1

Oswego Going Global

"Perhaps travel cannot prevent bigotry, but by demonstrating that all peoples cry, laugh, eat, worry, and die, it can introduce the idea that if we try and understand each other, we may even become friends.”

- Maya Angelou

“Going to Africa and hiking up Mt. Kilimanjaro with my Oswego Going Global family was one of the most wonderful experiences of my life. The physical and mental challenge was unparalleled. I will always remember the ethereal views from above the clouds and the full moon night sky brimming with bright stars. An overwhelming sense of love and humbleness flowed within me throughout the trip. As an educational experience, this trip ranks as one of the most important lessons of my life. I cannot truly describe the emotional impact the schoolchildren of Arusha had on me, not to mention our experiences in the Maasai Village. We have all been positively impacted by these experiences on ineffable levels. I am confident that we are all smarter, more aware, more open, and more upstanding global citizens because of the Oswego Going Global trip to Tanzania. It is an epic adventure that I will never forget.”-- Anthony Catalano
“Climbing Mt. Kilimanjaro is the most challenging thing I have done both mentally and physically. It is also one of the most rewarding things I have done. There is no better place to connect with others and share experiences than on the world’s tallest free-standing mountain where everyone pushes their limits. The experience didn’t stop with Kilimanjaro. Visiting the children’s secondary school was rewarding the moment I saw the smiles and excitement on those kids’ faces as our van pulled into the school grounds. Visiting the Masai village was truly an eye opener. It was a whole other world in the Masai village, one that may appear bizarre yet fascinating at the same time. It was also incredible to see the African animals in their natural habitats on the Arusha National Park Safari. I definitely have a broader concept of the world around me.”-- Ariel Power
“Every time I see this photo, I remember all the emotions that I experienced. We were exhausted, tired, and cold just to say the least. This was the point at which you had to fight your hardest to keep moving. Your body and your mind fought against each other. We all experienced this internal conflict of whether to keep going or to turn around. It was at this point that we all became stronger mentally and physically. I think we as a group came closest to a family as possible at this moment; at Uhura Peak.”-- Ashley Krakau
“On this trip there were many things that all the members learned from one another whether it was about each other or about the culture of Tanzania. For me a major part of the trip was to be able to say I successfully hiked up Mount Kilimanjaro. This trip had moments that showed all of the different emotions. Being part of this group I was able to express some of my qualities they may not be seen as openly in a class room setting. Leadership, stamina, persistence, and a lot of other qualities had to be part of every member to get to the top; we all showed these qualities at one time or another. There was always a smile on everyone’s face no matter how tough things were getting. Being on the mountain for about ten days also gave us a chance to get to know the porters that carried all of our gear. ………they would be there for you no matter what you needed during the trip.” -- Brian West
“This trip was a truly incredible experience. I made a lot of great friends and learned a lot of new things. I'm really grateful for the opportunity to have done something like this during college. It was life-altering, and extremely humbling to be able to see, and experience how an entirely different culture lives. “ -- Fabio Ritmo
“Africa is a continent rich with wonder, mystery, and the kindest hearts in the world. The climbing team, the staff at our lodge, the children at the school and the members of the Maasai tribe all welcomed us to their homes, their culture, and their way of life. We may never get back to this place, but we will go through our lives with a newfound wealth that we could not have found anywhere else in the world. Although Mt. Kilimanjaro is the highest point in Africa, I think the true summit lies at sea level with it's people.” -- Gary Morris
"Our climb up Kilimanjaro was AMAZING! An adventure of a lifetime. Summit day was tough. I took 5 steps forward & then I had to rest- truly a humbling, rewarding experience. I have no regrets and LOVED every second of the trip. When I'm asked the question what was the favorite part of my trip my response is "the people." My fellow OGG climbers and the guides, porters and staff from Roof of Africa Adventures were wonderful. I feel like we've become a family." -- Katie Maxwell
“Together We Go: Climbing Kilimanjaro was so much more than just a trip up a mountain, it was beyond just a vacation in Africa... it was greater than a singular moment or experience. It was, in fact, a self-actualizing, cultural recognizing, knowledge expanding, global appreciating phenomena. I consider myself a life student-- an ever evolving entity that never wants to stop learning. Much like my past study abroad experiences this opportunity revitalized and refreshed my desire to perpetually engage and learn every single day in a million different ways. The team we assembled was more than my mom and I could have dreamt of when we conceptualized Oswego Going Global. The students, the staff and of course our climbing leaders personified everything we wanted someone to learn and experience when they study abroad. Compassion, responsibility, sense of belonging and purpose and of course mental, emotional and physical strength. Together we went, together we grew and together we returned better, stronger and more well rounded.”-- Leila Karkia
“Traveling to Tanzania was an epic and beautiful experience. I was immersed in a culture very different then my own, and this opened my eyes to a completely new world. I explored this world both physically and mentally and encountered wonderful people and beautiful nature. This experience has increased my global awareness, and has helped me to see that all people are connected together in a basic way. It is my hope to travel back to Africa sometime in the future.”-- Matthew Krikman
"This is from the last day in the mountain where we presented them the money that we have collected overall as gratitude for their kindness and great help while we were at the mountain. There were so many emotions and events occurring all at the same time. There were happiness because we all made it and we finally get to shower. And there were also some sadness because it is our last time being together and there were some tears; both tears of sadness and joy. I never thought this trip would have that much impact on me that would cause me to burst into tears. I tried to hold it back and hide it from everyone else but I got so emotional that I couldn't help it. I could never meet any other group with such great passion and dedication. Those porters have truly touched my heart and inspired me to be content with what I have. They inspired me to enjoy life no matter how tough it is; "Hakunamatata." [ no worries ]--Mary Grace (Meg) Aguila
“I think this trip helped me understand myself as a person and the direction I want to continue in my life. Climbing this mountain for me was not so much a “climbing” achievement as much as it was a personal sense of accomplishment and test of charter and self worth. I took this opportunity to not only learn about Africa and its culture but to better understand my own culture. I had no idea what to expect when I signed up for this course, I do things to challenge myself and step outside my comfort zone. This class proved to do both and I feel has made me a better person because of the experiences this class offers. You could never learn the lessons of teamwork, compassion, understanding, and determination inside a classroom. This class is unique and not for everyone, but somehow we were able to get a perfect group of people together thanks to the hard work of the individuals who organized this entire project. This was an amazing experience that I will carry with me forever.”--Nicholas Hackenfort
“……... This experience was one of the most profound, incredible, and humbling I've had in my life to this point. The camaraderie, compassion, and just pure fluidity of the group (all 23 of us plus Protus, and crew) has and will always positively blow my mind. I truly felt like I was part of a giant family, on that mountain, and during our entire two weeks together in Tanzania. From the time we landed at JRO airport until the bus ride to the airport before our bitter sweet departure I witnessed positive moment after positive moment ….., I will never forget the extremely warm welcomes, smiles and human connections that were made during our visit. …….. indescribable experience. I am so thankful I was able to be a part of it. Thanks OGG and TROAA” -- Ryan Lemon
“The photo is of me and 2 children from the school we visited. Prior to this photo I gave a homemade bracelet to the girl standing by the tree and although she was very shy, she was so happy to receive the bracelet. Her face lit up as I put it on her wrist and it made me realize how much we, as a western civilization, have compared to other parts of the world, and in this case Tanzania. To me, the bracelet was just a simple bead and string creation, but to her it meant so much. Going to the school was such an eye opening experience in every way possible and has made me want to try and get involved with other organizations that will help send supplies to schools in need.” -- Stefanie Cornnell
“The trip to Tanzania was such a great experience for me. The time and experiences shared with my OGG teammates, and with the guides and porters on the mountain will be with me the rest of my life in memories recounted. It was truly a trip of a life time. I learned so much about the wonderful culture and people of Tanzania through my conversations with the guides and porters on Mt. Kilimanjaro, a Maasai spokesperson on our visit to his village, and the teachers of a rural primary school. I had never traveled outside the U.S. before this trip, other than Canada, but this trip has opened the door for me to the possibility of additional travel abroad to experience and learn from other cultures. Go OGG!” -- Steve Baker
“A journey of determination, hardship, friendship, adventure, accomplishment, and indeed an eye opener! …..We became friends and made many more friends……We learned a lot about ourselves and about others. What an awe –inspiring experiences!”-- MehranNojan