By Ben Jackson ’11
On June 1 this last summer seven anxious Brophy students met at Sky Harbor Airport and said farewell to their families and their country as they prepared to embark on the trip of a lifetime.
This trip was a 25-day Brophy sponsored immersion trip to Peru, where the main objective was to help build two houses for families.
To accompany the seven Brophy students were teachers Mr. JP Jarczyk ’99, Deacon Joe Stickney and Mr. Lloyd Daggett.
One house was for a family that was devastated by a 2007 earthquake that hit Pisco, Peru.
The second house was for a family suffering from poverty in Tacna, Peru.
However, the trip was about more than building houses, and over the course of the 25 days we all gained life experiences.
The seven of us learned a lot about Peruvian culture, the Spanish language and the injustices that occur in third world countries.
One of our most edifying cultural experiences was when we were invited to the baptism for one of the children whom we were helping.
After the baptism our Peruvian cultural education was extended as we attended a fiesta where all of us danced the night away.
We also experienced Peruvian culture when we lived with host families for two weeks. While we stayed with our host families we were accepted into their homes and lived like true Peruvians.
Living like true Peruvians included speaking mostly Spanish with our host families, and eating traditional Peruvian food. Most everyone, myself included, learned a lot about the Spanish language.
Going to Peru and living there for 25 days where all we heard was Spanish, aside from conversations between ourselves, was something totally different than what we were all used to.
While in Peru all of us became more aware of some of the injustices that occur in the world outside of the United States.
We learned about the consequences of globalization, including its affects on the third world.
Upon coming home from Peru all of our views on the world changed dramatically.
I began to see the United States as more of a materialistic country, much different than before I left.
Also, it was awkward coming back to an English speaking country after hearing and speaking mostly Spanish for 25 days.
This trip along with the immersion experience was amazing, to say the least.
Brophy has always claimed to be something different; I believe that the immersion program is one of the things that truly does set Brophy apart from all other high schools.