Lipscomb in Latin America completed its first semester with a full cohort this spring in Santiago de Chile. Twenty-four students studied courses inspired by the country’s history, culture and environment. The university partners with Universidad Alberto Hurtado for language courses, academic space and experiential learning events. Similar to Lipscomb, UAH is faith-based and well-known for its involvement in the city.
As a part of the experience, Santiago Global Scholars spent a day with human rights activist, Pedro Matta, at Villa Grimaldi and Cementerio General. Matta was a student leader at the University of Chile Law School during the September 11, 1973 coup d’etat. Tortured by the military regime, he has been testifying about the abuses as well as advocating remembrance since his release in 1976. When asked how he is able to return to the very torture center he endured, he said he does it to tell the story of those killed. Matta’s charge is to face the past in order to build a better future.
In addition to coursework, students enjoyed exploring the region and group travel to several destinations including Chilean Patagonia. Students often say relationships are the most valuable part of being abroad. Besides enjoying Chile with a small part of the Lipscomb community, some Santiago 2013 students made friends by playing intramural sports with UAH students. Others enjoyed a weekly tea with a Chilean home stay host, volunteered with local organizations, joined a home bible study and shadowed professionals in their career. Their hearts were blessed by the bountiful Chilean hospitality.
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