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Andean priest and spiritual leader, Don Fabian Champi Apaza. Photo by Tom Pablo, Andes & Amazon Semester.

Introducing your FOI!!!

[email protected] Estudiantes,

As we grow closer to our course, we would like to introduce you all to our Focus of Inquiry (FOI). On each Dragons course, the instructor team considers each component of the itinerary and instructor experiences/strengths to design a common thread that they incorporate into many phases of the course. During our time together, we will explore the following theme, and often refer back to it during different moments while traveling 🙂

Your FOI: What does it mean to be an effective global citizen? 

Especially these days, it is starting to feel like there is so much crisis going on in so many different parts of the world. The Amazon and Australia are on fire. Natural disasters hit different parts of our world weekly. Species are going instinct. There are refugee crises everywhere, from Greece to Berlin to Myanmar to the Northern Triangle to Lima. Recent and on-going protests in Hong Kong, Lebanon, Colombia, Ecuador, Bolivia, and Chile are all representing a global rebellion against neoliberalism. We pose the question — what is our personal obligation, as a citizen of the world, in addressing global crisis?

We believe beginning to answer this question — one that is at the same time intimately personal and collective — is a three-fold process:

  1. We must understand ourselves. This means investing time, energy, and intention into understanding our personal identities and our personal growth. It means understanding how our privilege affects how we move through the world. It means envisioning how we can be better people, and taking the daily steps to make that vision a reality.
  2. We must understand what is happening around us, wherever we may find ourselves. This means educating ourselves about the resistance movements and grassroots movements in our home communities, as well as in the communities we will be visiting during our time in Peru and Bolivia. This also means educating ourselves about the history of the communities and countries we visit, so that we have the tools to understand what is happening now.
  3. We must understand how the above two relate to each other — so that we can understand how we can be an ally in the resistance movements around us. How can we work with the communities and resistance movements around us, to be a better person and to create a better world? What is my obligation, once I inform myself of the luchas and resistance movements? In other words, how can I be an effective global citizen?

During our time in Peru and Bolivia in the next three months, we will be embarking on a journey in which we begin this process. But we want to emphasize — discovering how to be an effective global citizen is a lifelong process. You are not going to have all the answers in three months, and neither are we. Rather, we are excited to start (or continue!) this journey with all of you as we spend 84 days living and learning from powerful communities in the Andes and Amazon.

We cannot wait! See you oh so soon!

Abrazotes,

Carolina, Henry, and Jac