Sam's Semester in Cape Town, SA

Until now, I have never really stepped out of my comfort zone. Until now, I have followed the exact same path that many young people follow - I've done what I needed to do to excel academically, and have done so on a rather tight budget. Recently, I decided to step off this seemingly preordained path in order to fulfill a life-long dream.

I've always had the dream of traveling to a brand new place and immersing myself in a new environment, but haven't had the opportunity to do so. This year, as I finished up my Junior year at UC Santa Barbara, I was accepted into a semester-long study abroad program in Cape Town, South Africa. I will be leaving August 1st, and studying at Cape Town University through the end of November.

South Africa is an incredible place, and I have been fascinated with the country for years. The wildlife is spectacular, but that isn't all that drew me there. I've taken many Black Studies classes, and learning about this region of the world has shocked and amazed me. I am a Communication major, so interacting and learning within a culture as diverse and complex as South Africa's is the most appealing thing to me. 

This is a huge leap of faith for me and my family. I'm not studying abroad with friends from school - I decided to do this on my own. I haven't traveled very much in my life, so this is all very new to me. Most importantly, making the finances work will be tricky, and that's why I'm here.

While I recieved financial aid from UCSB, a $2,000 scholarship from the UC Education Abroad Program, and have the full support of my two amazing mothers, I've still come up a bit short, and I need your help.

Your donations will contribute to:
 - Round-Trip Airfare 
 - General Expenses (transportation, incidentals, etc.)
 - Extracurricular opportunities (TBD)

I have worked extremely hard to make my dream a reality. I've maintained a high GPA in order to recieve the most money possible through grants and scholarships. Last year I was promoted to Supervisor at my UCSB Athletics Event Staff job, and have been helping my parents pay my living expenses over the past three years. I'm working this summer to save up money, and will be participating in a paid internship during my time abroad. 

Any and all donations will help me achieve my goal. This trip will change my life and I hope to gain a new perspective about the world as I embark on my professional career in the coming years.

I am incredibly grateful to all of you who help support me. Thank you so much!

If you have any questions, feel free to contact me.

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Sam Waterstone 
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