Going into this program, I really didn’t know what to expect. I received an email about it one day and decided to give it a go based on my desires to go to Thailand and become a physical therapist in the future. I had no previous experience with going abroad or physical therapy, as I just finished my first year of college, so I was a little nervous for this trip the closer it came to leaving. However, I’m glad to say that any nervousness I had quickly dissipated when I met the staff and other students who were all so welcoming. I was able to build SO many amazing relationships that I know will last a lifetime, and I learned so much at the Tykes camp and at Thomas House. I was challenged each day we worked with these children, but I’m proud to say I’m leaving here with more experience, cultural competency, adaptability, and a new and improved outlook on life. I really don’t think this trip would have been the same without the staff and amazing students. They made each activity engaging and fun, whether it was a visit to a Temple or a night out at the Night Bazaar. I leave this trip with so many unforgettable memories, and I will always be beyond thankful to have been a part of this program.
What is your advice to future travelers on this program?
I would definitely say go into this with a completely open mind. I went in with a nervous mindset because I didn’t know what to expect, and I knew this was going to be an uncomfortable situation for me, but every reason I was nervous got shot down as soon as we got to Thailand. This trip was so amazing and taught me so much that I would have missed if I was not open to change, or learning, or messing up and having to adapt to situations that may not have gone as planned. Chad said to be like water (to move and flow through obstacles; learn to adapt to your environment to make it to the end of the task at hand even if it’s challenging; keep going even if there are things in the way), and I definitely think that this piece of advice is not only key to this trip, but key to a lot of situations in life.