I'm sitting in Sendai, Japan, in disbelief that I've just finished teaching my final leadership communications class of this summer. Each and every student among these eight classes has brought tremendous enthusiasm, curiosity, and dedication to his/her work and greatly contributed to class this summer. The stories that each told were personal, passionate, and motivational. Many were genuinely insightful beyond their years. To me, they've provided a true challenge for me to do my best, yet have also provided inspiration that I hope to hang on to for a lifetime.
This summer has been full of unexpected surprises, learning experiences, wonderful friendships, and immense exploration on so many levels. I'll be forever thankful that I had the courage to submit my application for the Trek and Teaching Fellowship, completed in less than 36 hours from when I saw the announcement to the application deadline. I applied for the opportunity to take myself out of my comfort zone and experience something new. The reality of that statement I now realize is a naive understatement. The chance to explore this part of the world has been eye opening, and has tremendously raised my awareness and curiosity to continue learning and contributing on a global perspective.
There are many more thoughts, blog posts, and distilling of these experiences yet to come. And frankly, I don't know where this will lead. I do know, however, that I am grateful for this learning and experience, and know that I'll be forever changed.