Kerala, India Fall 2016

All the above photos belong to Carol Velandia

International Field Placement Program (IFPP): School of Social Work, India 2016

Student: Carol Velandia

Carol Velandia, UMB second year School of Social work student, participated in a five month International Field Placement Program (IFPP) in Kerala, India. During this time, UMB students lived on the campus of our partnering school, Rajagiri College, in Kochi, India.  IFPP students enrolled in two MSW classes at Rajagiri College and participated in full-time unpaid internships in local social services agencies.   Students learned about and practiced Indian social work, learned cultural humility as they worked with clients and local MSW students from many cultures, and contributed to local social service agencies through their internships.  As part of Carol's field work in India, she and a team of MSW students developed a career awareness program for school children. Carol also worked with migrant workers in India and presented on "The Impact of Language in the Immigrant Population of the U.S." as part of her coursework, at Rajagiri College of Social Sciences. Please visit Carol's blog detailing her experience in India here

"India is one of the most diverse countries I have ever lived in. History has been written and re-written in a country that is 5000 years old and the cycles of life have been running for far longer than anywhere else. India lovingly embraced me and treated me as one of her own; I felt as if a powerful hand was always guiding me everywhere I went. I had the opportunity to spend the past six months in this wonderful country and my life has changed for good and for the better."

"I was able to experience many things beyond my field work in India. I met wonderful people that I hope to keep as my friends, and I visited magnificent places that will enrich my memories until my last breath. I am incredibly grateful for my time in India. It helped me understand that my home is where I am, whether that is India, the US, Colombia… wherever my heart is, there is my home. Sometimes you embark on a long journey, ready to change the world, and when you least expect it, the world has changed you! India changed me. My hope is that the world continues to change my soul for the better and that my work helps to serve them."