Diversity and Identity Abroad
Santa Clara University is committed to fostering a strong culture of inclusion regardless of differences. An important part of participating in global programs throughout the University programs is preparing yourself to encounter issues of identity beyond campus.
When you study in a foreign culture, you may have one or more aspects of your identity challenged by others, and the way you view yourself may be challenged as well. An aspect of your identity that defines you here in the States could go completely unnoticed while abroad. Alternatively, an aspect of your identity you never had to think about could become highlighted and questioned continuously in another country due to different cultural norms and standards.
The goal is to anticipate how different aspects of your identity may be received in the host country. To do so, it is essential to understand the constructs of your identity and empower yourself with knowledge of the complex cultural, social, and historical dynamics of the host country/city culture.
“At the end of the day, it is important to remember that if a situation of discomfort ever arises, your [program] community will never turn you away and will always do its best to support you.”
"At IESEG, since there are people from over 500 countries, everyone was open to a diversity of opinions, customs, and cultures. We were all different and fully embraced the wealth of diversity that we were immersed in every day. In the end, we bonded over our differences, but more so by our similarities."