Global Immersion Cuba begins in less than 24 hours! Our first test will be to get in to the country: we are armed with paper plane tickets, education visas, and the knowledge that we have exactly 44 lbs of luggage allowance. Here’s hoping that our travels go smoothly…
The majority of us have never been to Cuba, and are not entirely sure what to expect – which is part of what makes this trip so exciting! Over the past six weeks, our class has been visited by academics, political activists, and businessmen who have imparted a depth of knowledge about the Cuban economy, society, and political atmosphere. They described the Cuba of the past – a country which saw great success in the 1950s, and then slowly deteriorated under the iron fist of Fidel Castro. And they described present-day Cuba: the reforms being implemented by Raul Castro, the rise of self-employment and private enterprise, the fierce patriotism of the older generation, and the diplomatic battles that are being fought as Cuba transitions and seeks a new, improved position in the international order.
Cubans – and their advocates – hold much hope for the future of their country. Raul Castro has begun to implement reforms that are intended to fix the basic structure of the Cuban economy and provide Cubans with more opportunities than ever before. These reforms are an investment in the country’s future, and our class will be able to witness their impact, firsthand.
We will spend 7 days in Havana, meeting with Cuban political leaders, businessmen, and members of the military. Personally, I cannot wait to explore the country, and to experience a country that is at such an important point of transition.
Also, can’t wait to test out the rum 🙂