Friday, July 23, 2010

Final Thoughts on DukeEngage


I appreciate the nature of the DukeEngage Cape Town program for seamlessly combining and balancing intellectual stimulation, cultural immersion, and fun, light-hearted activities. I also appreciate Black Sash for providing me with an excellent internship experience that really catered to my interests and skills, while also providing me with worthwhile tasks such as conducting interviews of Sash members, writing biographies of them, and composing the first draft of an article for the ANC magazine. –Sarah

I appreciate the speakers that the professors have arranged for us to meet with throughout the entire program, as they have been enlightening and inspiring. Additionally, I appreciate the amount of trust that the District Six Museum gave the interns, as the Museum had confidence in us to help them with major projects. –Ibrahim

I appreciate the opportunity to integrate myself into South African society for a summer. –Samera

I appreciate the opportunity to immerse myself in diverse environments. I had the ability to see the dichotomy that exists in Cape Town—the wealthy area in which we live in our bed and breakfast, in stark contrast with the township of Manenberg in which I work every day. –Brandon

I appreciate, first and foremost, the opportunity to have participated in this program. It’s been a transformative experience that I cannot fully explain through words. I appreciate the people on this trip and the diversity of experiences that each contributes. Lastly, I appreciate the array of experiences that have shaped my time in South Africa. –Ubong

I appreciate the way that this program allowed me to have an educational experience that transcended the classroom setting, and I am looking forward to pursuing the new interests developed here and applying them in an academic setting back at Duke. –Will


I’ve been consistently impressed by our group and everyone’s willingness and eagerness to engage with the broader Cape Town community. I feel that we’ve really maximized our time here by participating in additional activities outside of what’s structured in the program. Some of my favorite things that I’ve done have been going to E-TV to watch a live news broadcast, and going to dinner with one of the original Sash members, who had Will and me over to her home for a home-cooked meal and casual interview. –Sarah

The amount of poverty in this world is beyond my comprehension. –Will

I have been impressed with the resilience of the displaced communities that District Six works with. I feel that this is something particularly unique to the displaced communities of the area. –Ibrahim

I notice that many of the issues facing South Africa are common to the United States and demonstrate global responsibility of all persons. –Samera

I’ve been impressed by how open many people in Manenberg are. I did not expect people to be so willing to open up and permit me to document them and allow me to come into their lives through documentary work. –Brandon

I’ve noticed that our DukeEngage program is very comprehensive, and I feel lucky and honored that I was selected to participate on this trip. It has shown me not only the beautiful side of Cape Town, but also the less fortunate side. I will never forget the images of urban poverty, the rumors of xenophobic attacks, and the grim realities of health in South Africa, and these realizations will remain with me back in the U.S. –Ubong


I hope that I was able to contribute something unique to my work placement, Black Sash, because they contributed so much to me during my two months here. –Sarah

I hope to pursue the new interests I’ve developed in South Africa in the future. –Samera

I hope to pursue documentary studies to a fuller degree and find answers for the ethical dilemmas involved in documentary-making that I’ve encountered while here. –Brandon

I hope to continue working with the information that I’ve learned here in South Africa and turn it into something valuable not only for myself, but also for the District Six Museum. –Ibrahim

I hope that I can adequately apply my experiences in South Africa to the Duke Community, and share my thoughts with people regarding what I have learned on this trip. I hope that future students apply to this program, because having seen the great impact it had on me, I’d like for others to have the opportunity to grow through DukeEngage Cape Town as I have. –Ubong

I hope that this program continues to further my personal development. –Will

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