Felicia K. Youngblood ’11 of King
- What was your favorite experience on this trip?
“I cannot pinpoint any certain experience from the Europe tour that was specifically meaningful. However, it is the culmination of every experience that I shared with my professors, chaperones and fellow students that sticks out in my mind. Having been a member of the Catawba Singers for four year, I have learned a great deal about music. However, what has been most meaningful is making personal connections with this wonderful group of people. I have been amazed time and again by the enthusiasm, compassion and dedication of every choir member. We have taken care of each other in times of tragedy, in the classroom, in sickness, and in performances. We have celebrated, laughed, cried, paid for each other’s meals in times of economic hardship, and stood by what we believe in – the transcendent power of music – at all costs.
- How has your perspective changed on this trip?
"Embarking on this journey with the Catawba Singers has renewed my faith in my generation. If all of humanity can put forth the love that I have felt over the past 10 days, I believe that there will be never-ending hope for a better world.”
- What have you learned through your experiences?
“After taking Cultural Anthropology with Dr. Carla Eastis this past semester, I felt prepared to tackle this journey and look at other cultures through the eyes of an anthropologist. I prepared myself to be open to culturally specific foods, rituals, clothing, religious practices, languages, and ideas. I had never traveled with such things in mind until the Europe tour. Though I did find that ethnocentrism still ruled much of my thought and much of the thoughts of those people in the places that I visited. I realized that stepping outside of myself to discover the small, but meaningful pieces of other cultures was the most rewarding travel experience that I have had. I ate frog legs, attended religious ceremonies, tried on clothing that was highly different from my personal style, spoke with strangers in foreign languages, and observed local cultural behaviors. As an anthropologist, I was excited to witness and record these experiences. As a student, I was thrilled to learn about the history and society that surrounded me. As a person, I was humbled in the realization that we are all very different and yet a little the same. My perspective of the world and of human experience was broadened on this tour.”