JE 2000 and 2002
College of the Atlantic
One of the more significant things that Journey East did for me was to catalyze the development of an ability to communicate with a diverse range of people. In collaborating with individuals of extremely different backgrounds both at home and abroad something about the normality of that time in life was broken. The social norms of the recent past seemed absurd in this new and greater context where I had cause to interact not only with a greater range of 'types' of people but would also see and feel a greater range of human emotion and expression of it. This would prove to be both cathartic and painful as re‐entry into normal life was always on the horizon and we would all be forced to reconcile the differences between who we had become and where we were returning to as the program itself became the recent past. In any case, despite the inevitable pain and pleasure derived from it, the forced suspension of normality at a time in my life when normal was so simply defined was a crucial first step in developing dynamic communication skills that served in the remainder of my education and have been indispensable in my professional work ever since.