Life has the strangest ways of working it’s way out, it takes patience and time to grow into the individual you’d always hoped to become. I came to Plymouth State to be a nurse, to pursue my ultimate goal; improving the life of another person. I was so caught up on this idea that it was the only way to achieve my goal, until a I “failed”. It wasn’t until now that I realized, that my “failure” was actually my savior. Interdisciplinary Studies gave me the opportunity to be who I wanted to be with out limitations and utilize my education to the fullest degree. With this opportunity I was able to create my own major, Global Health with a minor in Spanish Language. Global Health addresses the well-being of people, ranging from high to low income countries and developing countries. The concerns within them include infectious disease as well as chronic and non-infectious diseases, age-related illnesses, and disaster relief conditions. In addition to more common health conditions, Global Health works with mental illness, trauma, violence, war and displacement. The goal of my Senior capstone project was to combine both my research article and applied project, to educate individuals on how an interdisciplinary perspective such as Global Health, “can put things in a new light”.
The goal of my research was to educate the reader of controversies that come with humanitarian aid assistance abroad. Humanitarian aid assistance is given to vulnerable populations who are plagued with violence and poverty. This aid can also target communities facing post-disaster reconstruction. The assistance can be short-term or long-term with the ultimate goal being to improve the lives of suffering communities. This article touches on what humanitarian aid is, who are the donors and recipients, what their relations entail, how humanitarianism and disasters relate and whether or not foreign aid is an unequal exchange. The term “humanitarian gift” is analyzed greatly throughout this article. The main focus of this research is to see the detrimental effects that can occur in another country if aid is given with selfish intentions. I chose to conduct this research because I wanted to challenge my own beliefs. I had become so wrapped up in the happy idea that I was helping others and improving their lives, that I never once stopped to think, what if they didn’t want my help? What if me voicing my opinions and my ideas was actually harmful? My experiences abroad gave me a new perspective on life that changed me for the better. Now that I wish to pursue a career in this field it is my responsibility to cover all the bases, whether it be positive or negative.
Changing the World Through Service: a Step by Step Guide has one main goal, and that is to inform the reader on how humanitarian aid is helpful.The information a reader can take away includes: the importance of humanitarians, in depth steps to planning your own service trip abroad, how to respect someone’s “dignity”, what is the meaning of privilege, what it means to be human & how they are affected by resources. In addition one can learn from my guidelines on how to be a “conscientious humanitarian”, and seek other experience through interviews with local NH humanitarians.
Conclusion? This Only the Beginning…
I had always heard that if something in your life is easy, it isn’t necessarily worth it. Being a student in the Interdisciplinary Studies Program here at PSU made me work toward a diverse education I am extremely grateful for. I learned how to be self sufficient and motivate myself to take the reigns of my everyday education. It opened doors to different branches of study, which strengthened my ability to think from a multitude of perspectives. Most importantly, I learned you do not have to stay satisfied with one discipline, depending on one’s mindset an IDS student can take the opportunity to become an expert in as many disciplines as they wish. My senior capstone project exemplified that there is a world out there for me, waiting to be explored. To be interdisciplinary, is a quality I believe everyone should strive for.