CIEE Rabat cultural peer experience

Authored by:
Manal Fakhar

Being a cultural peer is an experience that is 100% worth it.  It’s an experience that carried a lot of noticeable lessons whether it’s about helping others or helping myself. It gave me the great opportunity of helping exchange students who came to a new country , help them to  familiarize with this  new environment , help them to get their marks whether it’s for one month or a whole semester , show them around so they will gradually feel that they are  in the right place , be their friend , be there for them when they feel homesick or when they feel bad or just to be a shoulder they can rely on so they can know that they have someone who is there for them even though they are in a different country .

I gained so many friends and memories from all the activities and all the things we did , like going out for ice cream when my friend felt low because she was homesick , or the day we decided to make cupcakes for the whole class and the office or just hanging out around a coffee to talk about what was bothering them  or surprising them for their birthdays or inviting them for couscous at my house . Doing all this , also helped me a lot , because before being a cultural peer I couldn’t engage in a conversation I was too shy , but as I started to be a cultural peer and as I had to communicate with students since it was my mission , I became more outgoing and less shy , it really taught me how to communicate well and efficiently , but most importantly how to engage in a conversation perfectly  and fit in a group since everyone knows how it is hard to fit in a group after it was already formed , especially if it’s people who are young .

 Being a cultural peer , has been the best decision I ever made and the best opportunity I was given, It was an opportunity that was really important for my personal growth and that helped me to be the person I am today , I will always be grateful for it to CIEE and how they pushed me out of my comfort zone to be a better version of myself . 

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