Meet Juliette, a Traveling Cast
Member from Belgium in Up with People!
What were you doing before coming to Up with People?
“I had just graduated college this past June as an elementary school teacher. I studied in Belgium for four years and joined Up with People in July 2018. Up with People gives a lot of opportunities to discover new things. While I was traveling in my first semester, it felt like I was keeping my head above water trying to absorb all of the experiences. It was super exciting, but overwhelming too. I feel like coming back for another semester has allowed me to experience a lot more since I am a little more familiar with how everything works. It makes it a little easier to take things in. I think having a general idea of what Up with People was before joining also helps, and makes it interesting to see what it was like being outside of my cast. It’s cool seeing how the program works and how people develop within the group.”
What have you learned from your experience so far?
“I think I’ve learned many things. Something that stands out to me is how the success of the group is more important than your own personal success. If someone is better than you at something it doesn’t mean that you’re not good enough. It just means that someone else is better at it for that moment and you’ll use your strengths somewhere else. That’s how the whole group will benefit and succeed. By traveling and experiencing different families, I’ve learned a lot of what I want in life. I’ve been given a lot of different perspectives and I feel like I’ve developed more critical abilities because of the amount of people, different places and cultures I’ve had the chance of experiencing.”
With all the things you have learned, what will you change in your country once you go back home?
“As a teacher and having the understanding of the curriculum and working with students in different schools through workshops, I think I’ve realized how having an education is more of a privilege. There are more problems behind literacy that I never really thought about previously. It’ll be great to work with kids, considering they are the future, and being able to create a deeper understanding within the community of global citizenship. I’m looking forward to using the power I have to work with kids and informing them more about what’s happening in the world around them.”
What was your main objective when you came to Up with People? Has that changed?
“Before coming to Up with People, my main objective was to figure out what I wanted to do before starting my career. I wanted to be able to take time to reflect more into myself before committing to something that could take years of my life. I knew I wanted to travel, help people and work with music because that’s so important to me. Hearing about Up with People was a great combination of the three. After completing my first semester, I wanted to come back and form more connections and have more interactions with the people around me. Whether that’s bonding with my cast mates, or the people I meet within the community, it’s something that’s undoubtedly valuable and I will use for the rest of my life. I also have gained a lot of stamina. I am someone who needs to sleep a lot and after living in such a fast paced environment, I’ve been able to push myself above and beyond my own limits. Even on the days where it feels like there’s nothing more to give, I know I can still give more and that’s something I will continue to practice in my life.”
“Reach out, and take my hand
Together, we’ll take a stand
So many people fall every day
Don’t you think it time we try
to help them find their way.”
Make A Change © Up with People
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Topics: "On The Road"
Up with People is a global education organization which aims to bring the world together through service and music. The unique combination of international travel, service learning, leadership development and performing arts offers young adults an unparalleled study abroad experience and a pathway to make a difference in the world, one community at a time. Click here to learn more about the internationally acclaimed program, Up with People.