During Spring Break 2018, I had the opportunity to spend ten days on the Amazon River, seeing incredible wildlife and scenery. After spending the first part of the semester learning about the culture and ecology of the Amazon rain forest and its people, it was fascinating to see the things that we had learned about with our own eyes. Having faculty and guides with such expertise truly made the experience unique, as we were constantly learning about our surroundings. As a young boy, I always dreamed of becoming a scientist or an explorer. In a time when there aren't many unexplored places left in the world, this was probably the closest I could ever come to achieving that dream. From waking up early to look for birds to staying out late catching caiman, every minute was filled with excitement and discovery. This made me realize how much time I wasted in my everyday life and showed how much more I can accomplish when I make the most of every minute. The trip was also a welcome respite from the stress of schoolwork. Through the class and the study tour, I gained a new appreciation for the planet Earth and the importance of protecting it. I also reaffirmed my love for experiencing new cultures and I can’t wait to see where I go next! My artifact below is a picture of our group, representing all the new friends that I made on this journey.