Claire Ostertag-Hill, a senior double majoring in Biology and Psychology and minoring in Chemistry at Oregon State University, interned at the Center for Social Medicine in India through IE3 Global Internships during Fall 2013 and explains the impact her experience overseas has had on her day-to-day life.
After completing my internship at Pravara Medical Trust, I was fortunate to be able to travel northern India for a little over a week before visiting Thailand and then making a short stopover in South Korea. These post-internship travels allowed me to transition more slowly back into life in America. I first got the chance to explore the grand cultural diversity and visit some of the big sights in India, followed by embarking on new cultural adventures in Thailand and South Korea. This gave me an opportunity to first reflect on India’s culture through contrasting it with other Asian cultures and appreciate the cultural ideals that are maintained across Asia. The excitement of my post-internship travels initially prevented me from realizing the lasting impression India had made on me during my eleven weeks there.
Now that I am settling back into my life in the U.S., the lasting impacts of my time in India are becoming much more evident. Of course it is nice to be back with my family and friends, to have conveniences of American life, and the freedom to safely make my own decisions. However, there are many things I miss about India – my friends, the culture, the bright colors, the lively streets and busy village. I miss the unpredictability of life in India, and the knowledge that each time I stepped out my room, I would be embarking on a new adventure with new observations to be made and new things to be learned. I love India for all the amazing new experiences it has enabled me to have over the past eleven weeks, from the novel medical and health exposures, to becoming an active participant in the rich Indian culture and visiting the absolutely breathtaking architecture, and to the exciting activities I engaged in such as para-sailing, riding on the back of a motorcycle, and riding an elephant and a camel. It is difficult, nearly impossible, to fully describe everything that I have experienced in India and the lasting effects it has had on me as a person and potentially on my future.
Follow the link below to Claire’s original entry on the IE3 Field Notes Blog: http://ie3global.ous.edu/blog/comments/1363