Student's Experiences

Each year students that go on Arrupe Immersions share their experiences through written reflections, photographs, and videos. You can explore previous Immersion's experiences by year

Sports and Education in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

"It matters less

Where we traveled to

Whether north, east, south or west

What matters more is what traveled back with us

The ideas, experiences and perspectives we held onto

Give us an obligation to share our story

Whether or not we want to

Because

1 idea

1 story

Can change the world

A lot can change in a week

And Even more in a year

So let me make this clear

We are the ones we've been waiting for

The ones time

Has always been leading us toward

So please

Keep. Moving. Forward. "

by Jared Ross

Indigenous Rights and Environmental Justice in Leticia, Colombia. 

Why Arrupe Immersions Matter (According to Students)?

Coal Mining and Environmental Justice in Appalachia.

A POEM BY MICHAELA EDWARDS, 2019 PARTICIPANT:

I found God in West Virginia.
In the rays of the early morning sun stretching over the hills.
In the crisp air that shakes your bones and fills your lungs with new vitality. In the ever-changing skies full of orange and purple delights.
I found God in West Virginia.

I found God in West Virginia.
In the hope of the people and the history of their plight.
In the sorrow of the strangers who came here for the first time.
In the families and the homes who seem so different from mine. But we’re really all the same, children of God, just trying to survive. I found God in West Virginia.

I found God in West Virginia.
In the rivers flowing clean and the rivers running dirty poisoned by the machines.
In the birds with red feathers and the songs in their hearts.
In the brown crunchy leaves scattered for miles across the forest floor, waiting for a chance to bud. I found God in West Virginia.

I found God in West Virginia.
On top of that mountain with no top at all, the image far more powerful than any words about it. On top of that mountain, I saw death and destruction with no resurrection in sight.
On top of that mountain, I cried and I cried and I cried.
I found God on top of that mountain.

On top of that mountain, I meet a baby green tree, one of the last of its kind. I thanked him, I hugged him, and he showed me the light.
On top of that mountain I felt the raging winds of the all-mighty force; screaming, yelling, telling me I’m apart of something bigger than myself.

On top of that mountain, my friends felt this same urge and together we grieved for our Earth. I found God on top of that mountain.

That same day I spoke to some men who love the land they come from. They work hard every day to feed their loved ones and to find peace in their home.
That same day I looked into the eyes of an angel, blue eyes as clear as can be. With strong hands and strong conviction he said something to me:

“Follow your dreams, they’ll be there when you look for it”

That day I will never forget. The feelings that rushed over me. A thread of sadness, anger, confusion, and then God’s love pouring over me.
I found God in West Virginia.

Migration, Borders and Transnational Communities. Puebla, Mexico.


 

Migration and Restorative Justice. The Dominican Republic.

For me, the past week in the Dominican Republic has been one of the most impactful moments of college so far. No matter how many attempts I make to put my experience into words, I can only barely scratch the surface of what I saw, learned and felt for those seven days. The organizations we worked with, specifically reconoci.do, has opened my eyes to the injustices and effects of colorism and discrimination outside of the United States. Despite how beautiful the country is and all the tourism it attracts, the underlying racial injustices are still rampant in the country. We’ve learned that something as simple as spreading the word can make a monumental difference.

Alene, Dominican Republic Arrupe Immersion, 2018

 

I am honored and grateful that I got to experience the Dominican Republic in the way that I did. The tourism industry and the public Dominican understanding of history and politics don’t address the experiences faced by marginalized people/communities such as migrant sugar workers and Dominicans of Haitian descent. Learning from Reconoci.do members was a transformative experience as I learned about their resistance, involvement, and fight towards the recognition and security of human rights. I was impacted on many intra- and interpersonal aspects. My understanding of immersion, accompaniment, leadership, and community has expanded, and I am even more passionate about my areas of study.

Dalia, Dominican Republic Arrupe Immersion, 2018