Today I had the chance to conduct health interviews outside the dental clinic, and also got to teach in the classroom in Red Bank. During the interviews, I acquired some good information on health, stress, family, and satisfaction. During the afternoon session, we covered topics of Action, Passion, and Bullying.
One of the interesting experiences I had involved the students that I was in charge of in my small group. First of all, the students were a little shy, and they weren't responding well to the questions. After a few questions, we strayed a little off topic and got to talking about different languages. I happen to know a little Spanish and Korean, so we got to talking about that. It turns out that most of the students speak 2-3 different languages, and some even know 4. You could tell they were pretty good when they picked up and remembered different phrases you explained to them. After that they all were more open and talkative, and it was a lot smoother sailing from then on. I think it just goes to show you how building trust and building/initiating relationships can help you move forward. I also realized during the small group discussions that I may be the only Asian American that these students ever have a chance to interact with. Talk about being an "Ambassador", I was representing a whole different culture to them. From my previous experiences abroad, this is not too uncommon in a multi-cultural setting. One person can change the way you perceive a country or culture. It was pretty cool, and I felt like I left a good impression on them.
Overall, it's been a great ISLP experience so far. It's also been a blast getting to know all of the different team members throughout the trip.