¡Hola! My name is Nora Williams and I am a fourth-year with an International Relations and Sociology double major and Human Rights minor. I studied abroad in Fall 2014 on UCEAP Human Rights and Cultural Remembrance in Argentina and Chile. This trip not only gave me one of my best friends but also a new perspective on life and human rights. Thus, to say that this experience changed my life would be an understatement.
Upon first arriving at UC Davis, I had no intentions of studying abroad. However, after a peer advisor came to speak in one of my classes about all the amazing programs offered by UC Davis, I was convinced. In the next couple of months, I made numerous trips to the Study Abroad office to talk to the Peer Advisors--all of whom answered every single question that I could possibly have without fail.
After I had finally completed all the paperwork and mustered up the courage to leave my home, I embarked on my adventure. I think the two things that I appreciated most about my program were, (1) I got to know two very different cities very well (Buenos Aires, Argentina and Santiago, Chile) and, (2) I got to study a subject that is extremely important to me. My friends and I explored every inch of each city. We located the best/cheapest empanada places, attended various art gallery crawls and live music performances, and frequently hiked through the countryside.
Moreover, academically, my program focused our studies on the widespread human rights abuses that occurred under the Argentine and Chilean military dictatorships, respectively. This trip exposed me to things that I had previously been blissfully ignorant of. However, I am glad that it did so because these are stories that deserve to be heard as today both Argentines and Chileans are still affected by the atrocities committed 30 to 40 years ago. Furthermore, this program also helped me realize my passion for human rights advocacy which inspired me to pursue a future degree in International Human Rights Law.
I cannot wait to be that same support system and hype-woman that the Peer Advisors were for me for someone else that is interested in studying abroad this year!