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Nga Than's Story

Nga Than and her project group during the Happiness Now Project in Tanzania in 2023

I wonder where I should begin to tell everyone about my experience from the recent trip I took to Tanzania within the NSCC’s Happiness Now international education program.

The trip only lasted for two weeks, but it must have been the most impactful and memorable trip that I have ever taken. We were grouped with local students to come up with ideas and run a little project from the beginning to the end. Outside of the project, we visited and supported the local community. We spent our time both inside and outside of working time to get to know the different aspects of local life. I’ve always greatly appreciated the chance to get to know places and cultures. In this trip, we were not only introduced to a new culture on the surface level (as we might have been if we were just visiting as tourists).

Working with local students plus spending precious time outside of the project with them and with other local groups, we had many first-hand opportunities to learn about the local way of life in a very profound way. Learning about a new culture can be overwhelming. Things strike us in both positive and negative ways. In my opinion, however, nothing enriches our minds as profoundly as learning about a different way of seeing the world.

Within Canadian students and staff, the chance we had to stay in the same place and to support each other within the program was also an unforgettable time. I got to know some people a lot better than many other people that I have known for a long time. We now have one thing in common: we share the memory of a meaningful trip that I believe we all wish to relive. “Where do you begin telling someone their world is not the only one?” (Lee Maracle, Ravensong-A Novel). I would recommend an international education program to other NSCC students as one of the most rewarding experiences.