Every week we are going to be sharing some of our favorite places in Cuernavaca with you! We will be giving you the inside look on all the fun places to go in Cuernavaca, Mexico while you study abroad! Today’s Cuernavaca Corner was written by Brittney Westgard, alumni of our Social Work program and current volunteer in Mexico. Brittney is an Augsburg College Alumni.
Lamont Slater is an instructor and program coordinator for the Center for Global Education and Experience (CGEE) for Southern Africa (Namibia). Lamont is a PhD Candidate at Salve Regina University in Rhode Island. He holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from Morris Brown College in Atlanta , GA and a Masters of Arts from St. Edwards University in Austin, Texas. Lamont has taught various History at Quinsigamond Community College and Anna Maria College, relating to Africa and the diaspora. He has a wealth of experience with teaching, student assessment ,student life, diversity and inclusion, and knowledge of the Southern African region.
His dissertation is on “The Reclassification of the Post-Colonial Enslavement period as genocide,” which includes a study of the Herero massacre in Namibia by the Germans. He is also fluent in German language.
Born in Fortaleza, Brazil, Attila has always been drawn to and fascinated by language and cultural diversity around the world. In 2015, he earned a B.A. in Sociology and French at Berea College in Kentucky. Attila has extensive experience working in diverse environments, having lived in Brazil, Italy, Senegal and Namibia. With React & Change, a nationwide coalition of youth social-entrepreneurs, Attila helped organize and promote Brazil’s first Youth Empowerment Forum in 2011, which gathered youth activists working on gender inequity issues in the country. In the summer of 2012, Attila interned at Broto Onlus in Italy, where he managed the communication between Broto’s office in Italy and the NGO’s in Brazil and Tanzania that receive financial support from the Onlus. Attila also served with CIPFEM, an NGO in Dakar, Senegal that focuses on women leadership and the education of girls, and created a photography club where young girls learn basic photography skills and are encouraged to communicate their life stories through photography. During his senior year in college, Attila became the Education Abroad Student Manager at Berea College’s Center for International Education, where he had a chance to give back to his community by empowering other students to study, intern and volunteer internationally.
Attila Sá is the current International Resident Advisor at CGEE Southern Africa. In this position, Attila serves as a bridge between staff and students. He provides all-around support to students in their adaptation to living and learning in Southern Africa, and assists program coordinators in the planning, execution and evaluation of programming. After having his life so positively impacted by his experiences abroad, Attila has become an avid advocate for international education.
In 2014, Amber earned her B.A. in Spanish/Women’s, Gender & Sexuality Studies/Philosophy from Colby College in Waterville, Maine. Amber was a CGEE student of the “Migration and Globalization: Engaging in Our Communities” program in the Spring of 2013. She was drawn to CGEE’s program due to CGEE’s commitment to collectively build and foster a healthy, critical, and transformative learning environment surrounding local and global conditions of social justice and oppression.
Amber grew up in the border of El Paso, Texas and Cd. Juarez, Chihuahua and her experience abroad in Cuernavaca, México through the “Migration and Globalization: Engaging with our Communities” program provided her with a new understanding of the effects of immigration, human rights, and sociocultural barriers faced by many Central, Southern and Northern Mexican communities as well as Central and Southern American communities in Mexico and the United States. Her academic and social interests involve social justice issues, gender and women studies, immigration/migration, and human rights.
As an International Resident Assistant/Fellow for the CGEE Mexico academic programs, Amber continues to further her knowledge in human rights and social justice issues through her internship with the “Comisión Independiente de Derechos Humanos de Morelos, AC” . She also feels it is important to encourage students to pursue their passions and believes that one of the most important tools for the knowledge and pillars of continued learning and holistic education is rooted in community-based experiential learning. On her free time she enjoys reading, exploring the complexities of immigration, hearing stories, and being with students and staff.
Here are some photos from the summer program’s recent excursion to the Nevado de Toluca, or Xinantécatl. An extinct volcano that is located in the State of Mexico, southeast of the city of Toluca. The Nevado de Toluca is approximately 4,600 meters above sea level. There is a crater in the volcano which contains lakes (Lake of the Moon and Lake of the Sun). The students were able to go down to these lakes. Although at one point it started hailing, the students really enjoyed the excursion! Two of our host families also came along and had a fun time climbing the Nevado.
Thanks to new IRA Amber Ramirez for the photos and description!
Here are some snapshots of last week’s cooking class with a former CGEE kitchen staff. Students really liked learning a new, typical Mexican dish! They made tlacloyos (stuffed homemade tortillas), flan (custard-type of desert), creme of poblano pepper and salsas!