Global Engagement Experience
Chile Spring 2024

Day 1

Saturday, March 2nd, 2024

After a few hours of packing, cleaning, driving, flying, and speedrunning duolingo, I finally made it to Santiago, Chile! This was my first time flying alone so I had to constantly keep my family updated so they would not worry too much about me. I felt a sense of responsibility and made it a point to document every moment of my trip so I could relive these moments where I could see myself grow as both an engineer and as a person. Image 1 The first thing that caught my eye upon arrival was the view of the Andes Mountains from the airport. Although slightly cardinally challenged, I knew that just on the other side of those great mountains was Chile’s neighbor: Argentina. Excited for the trip, I tried my best to acquaint myself with my classmates and we all got on the bus soon after to go to our hotel in Santiago. Image 2 After taking a shower and a quick nap, my roommate for the week (Reyna) and I decided to go downstairs and experience the warmth of Chile. As someone who was born in a sunny place and lived in warm weather my whole life, I gladly welcomed the hot Santiago sun after Pennsylvania’s cold winter.

Our first group meal was so fun and I immediately found a group of friends who I knew would make this trip even better. Image 3 The food was absolutely amazing and I got my first peek into the kind of food I would be having the rest of the week. Immediately I noticed how Chileans love having lots of bread as almost everyone on our table had a burger or sandwich of some sort.

Image 4 I was already beginning to warm up to the Providencia area (which is where we were staying) before we had orientation, where we learnt about a few cultural norms, and how to use the Metro. On our first time in the Los Leones Metro Station, it was so crowded that three of us couldn’t even get into the train! We saw our classmates sadly wave at us from inside the Metro as the three of us stood outside half crying, half laughing. We did our best to inform everyone about what happened however, and soon enough we were on the next train, ready to go to dinner.

Image 5Image 6 We ended the night getting to know each other, and having a good dinner with pasta, and lots of ice cream!