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One taught English to 120 sixth-graders in Thailand. Another visited a rural school in Malaysia and encouraged students to pursue higher education. Yet another is working for an international corporation in India. UCSD students are studying, conducting research and working all around the globe this summer. Their latest Dispatches from the Field chronicle their adventures abroad. Here are their stories.

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Benjamin J. Trevias
“No Worries” and 120 Smiles in Thailand

Trang, Thailand, Aug. 18 -- What I took away from my two weeks at Baan Lang Khao English Camp in Thailand was how much compassion and hospitality could be found within a single meal and smile. In fact, it was almost two dozen meals in two weeks and at least 120 smiles a day at our school. Thai hospitality is legendary, but what we received exceeded all expectations and could only be succinctly captured in the frequently used Thai phrase, “Mai pen rai,” or “no worries.”

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Photo of Michael Wang
Benjamin Trevias recently spend three weeks teaching English in Thailand as part of UC San Diego's Alternative Breaks program.

 

 

 

Arjun Varma
Seeing Another Side of India While
Working for an International Corporation

New Delhi, India, Aug. 18 -- When I visited India previously, it has always been on a vacation with my family to visit relatives. This is the first time I have come by myself and for work, instead of leisure. I wanted to do an internship in an international workplace environment, as it is interesting to be a part of a totally different culture and see how things are done in the office. India seemed like an ideal place to do an internship, as it is, along with China, one of the fastest-growing economies in the world today.

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Arjun Varma, a sophomore and economics major at Sixth College, is working as an intern at the headquarters of PepsiCo India in New Dehli.

 

 

 

Cindy Tran
PRIME Students Meet Prime Minister

Penang, Malaysia, Aug. 18 -- The international scientific community has never before now come together to prevent a pandemic before the virus is even capable of spreading worldwide. I am currently conducting research on the Avian Flu H5N1 virus in Malaysia as part of UCSD’s Pacific Rim Experiences for Undergraduates program, also known as PRIME. It is exciting to be essentially competing with evolution!

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Cindy Tran is getting to know a completely different culture in Malaysia, while doing research on avian flu strains.

Previous Dispatches

 

Sara Richardson
A Rugby Match, a 90-Mile Beach
and a Luge Ride: Sightseeing in New Zealand

Auckland, New Zealand, Aug. 18 -- Six weeks into my trip to New Zealand and I don’t feel like a tourist anymore. I’m familiar with the bus routes in Auckland, the largest city in the country. I buy groceries to cook dinner and make sandwiches for lunch instead of eating out—though I do still eat out at times to try the local cuisine. I work the ol’ 9-5 and I could tell you which TV shows are on which channels in the evenings (granted there’s only four channels here at the hostel). Driving the rental car on the left side of the road while sitting on the right side of the car actually seems normal in my head now (watch out for me when I get back!). And I’ve even picked up a few of the local phrases like “Sweet as” and “Good on ya’ mate.”

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Photo of Sara Richardson
Sara Richardson is studying at the University of Auckland, New Zealand, where she is creating 3-D models to determine the impact of athletic activity on muscles' size and shape.

Previous Dispatches

 

 

 

Michael Wang
Exploring Beijing’s Different Personalities

Beijing, China, Aug. 18 -- Less than three weeks into my stay in Beijing, it became apparent to me that I will miss this city, and especially the people that I have come to know and call friends.  Little had I expected that my favorite cultural experience during my time abroad would in fact be interacting with the graduate students at my host institution. I enjoy having discussions with them on China’s history, politics and society, and observing the similarities and differences between Chinese and American societies. I especially value these conversations, because they inspire me to not judge others and they compel me to be better educated on world issues.

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Photo of Michael Wang
Michael Wang is studying at the Computer Network Information Center in Beijing, China, while trying to improve his Mandarin and blend in.

Previous Dispatches

 

 

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