Dateline Delhi: A Study Abroad Experience in India

This spring, 18 Kent State University students and their two professors, Gary Hanson and Mitch McKenney, spent nine days in Noida, near Delhi, in India’s Uttar Pradesh to produce a multimedia collection of news and feature stories. Their hosts at Amity University provided student-partners who served as guides, collaborators and translators.

Kristin Bauer, a senior photojournalism major and photo illustration minor from Westlake, Ohio, shares this first-person account of her study abroad experience where she experienced another culture and way of life as well as broadened her understanding of international journalism.

At first glance, one could say why would you choose India over other study abroad programs and opportunities at Kent State? However, my response would be, “Why wouldn’t I?”

I traveled to India with the International Storytelling class during this past spring semester to work on international journalism. In traveling to India, I learned so much not only about the world and journalism, but in true human kindness that we oftentimes lack within the United States

All of a sudden, all of the trivial things within the United States didn’t matter: from living in a place where I wasn’t able to consume clean water to living in a world where my biggest problem was waking up for class on time.

While in India, I was working on a story with my classmate about hospital overcrowding. My first day working on this story, I stood on the street of Delhi near the hospital in absolute shock and terror that people were just simply left to live like this.

A woman washes her family’s clothing in the Yamuna River. Due to the activities that take place along the banks of the river and in the river, the level of sanitation has sharply declined.(Photo by Kristin Bauer)

Despite of my fears in working on this story and talking to the patients on the street, I was surprised about the kindness I found in what seemingly was the darkest corner of the world in which I traveled to. It was then the patients offered me water and food because they were concerned for me. I couldn’t believe how someone who had so little could even begin to worry about me, someone who seemingly has so much.

Traveling to India has shown me just how much we take things for granted within the United States. Things alone such as clean water, a vital need, go completely unnoticed within this country when so many go without.

Studying abroad is such a truly life changing experience and I would highly recommend doing so at some point within college.

To view the other stories told in International Storytelling, please visit www.datelinedelhi.org.

To view my blog from my trip and to view other photos, please visit http://kbauer7.wordpress.com andwww.flickr.com/photos/kristinbauerphotography.

For more information about study abroad programs at Kent State, visit www.kent.edu/studyabroad

Credit to http://www.kent.edu/

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