The countdown to Africa is now at less than two weeks. There are few occasions I’ve ever been this excited about, but I’m also more scared than I’ve ever been. Having never traveled out of the country I’m extremely nervous about the long flight and scared of the unknown. I know this trip will probably be one of the best experiences of my life and that I will grow from this experience, but I’m missing my loved ones already. I keep telling myself that I cannot let my fears get in the way. So far it’s working but I know that I will be shaking as I step onto the plane May 15.
For those of you who don’t know, I am a major in history with a minor in African studies and political science. My passion lies in studying African history and I hope to apply to an African history graduate program after graduating next year. This past February I applied for a summer research grant with my professor and mentor Dr. Sarr in hopes to have funds to do a research trip to Africa. After a lot of hard work and crossing fingers, we were awarded the grant and now we are off to Africa! Dr. Sarr is originally from The Gambia so I have the good fortune of travelling with a local who can show me the ins and outs of life in West Africa. While in West Africa I will be travelling throughout the Gambia and Senegal, meeting academics and government officials, visiting archives and museums, conducting interviews and getting a taste of how to conduct research in Africa.
I will try to update this blog as much as possible once in Africa!