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Do You Know What it Means to Miss New Orleans? 💔

It has been two full weeks since our departure from New Orleans and not a day goes by that I do not reflect on my experiences.  Going into the class I did not realize to what extent the “service” aspect of our trip would include. I really enjoyed the farming and agricultural practices we were able to partake in and learning about how they compare to the practices we have here in California. It was such a great opportunity to learn new things not only scientifically, but about the culture of the people who come from the state/area and how they have dealt with the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina.  I was
surprised to discover the overall poverty level of the state of Louisiana.  Hearing people’s stories and physically seeing the destruction that is still evident in the neighborhoods was very impactful for me.  The people who were the most affected do not have
the money to rebuild or fix their homes.  It helped me to reflect on how fortunate I am to come from a place that only really has to deal with wildfires and the ground shifting beneath our feet.

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One of the highlights from this trip for me was trying the various types of foods and hearing the different music in the French Quarter.  Something that stood out to me was when one of my fellow classmates asked where there was good music and the person he asked answered him with, “Just follow your ears.”  I couldn’t help but laugh at that because it was so true;
around every corner there was something new and exciting.  Not only in the realm of music were there exciting things to be found, but throughout our whole trip we were faced with places and situations that made for intriguing lectures or experiences.
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Some of the most random things that I enjoyed were the fact that we were able to see the Mississippi
River and the Gulf of Mexico.  I was glad when Dr. A had us take that short drive down to the Southern-most tip of Louisiana after our full day of working on a garden because that is something that not many people can say they have done.  Throughout our whole
trip we were able to encounter and learn so many things that I would have never known or been able to experience if it had not been for this class.  I would like to thank Dr. A, Dr. Patsch, Dr. Huggins, Dr. Lambrinos (& Diana!), IRA, and CSU Channel Islands
for offering me this amazing opportunity to go outside of my main area of study (English Education) and learn and serve not only the environment but the people as well.  

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