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  • OMA&D Community Spotlight - Laura Clise

    February 10, 2022

    Laura Clise shopping in front of a small businssSpend Like it Matters

    Meet Laura Clise, founder and CEO of Intentionalist, a site that makes intentional shopping and supporting small businesses much easier. Born in Seoul and adopted into a family that has been in Seattle for generations, Laura has been around small business owners her entire life. Her grandma, whose formal education was terminated after the 8th grade, opened up a small appliance repair business with her grandfather. Their small business was transformational for both of them, and for generations to follow.

    Years before she founded Intentionalist, Clise had already been thinking about her spending and how it can impact development of communities and neighborhoods. After the political and social eruptions that followed the 2016 elections, Clise decided to create Intentionalist, to show people that they had power in their own hands to help facilitate change.

    Many minority-owned and historically disadvantaged businesses face issues of access to capital and financial resources, many times born out of systemic issues. Clise points out that it's often harder for immigrant and refugee owned businesses. She states, "[they lack] accessibility when it comes to navigating systems and processes like regulatory policy and otherwise". This disparity of access to small business resources was amplified as small and microbusinesses were faced with even fewer options and less support during the lockdowns of early 2020 that carried on into 2021. According to research conducted by management consulting firm McKinsey & Company, minority-owned businesses are some of the most creative and flexible yet are still in high financial risk. They state, “of all vulnerable small businesses, minority-owned ones may be most at risk. Many were in financially precarious positions even before COVID-19 lockdowns, and minority-owned small businesses often are in industries more susceptible to disruption.”

    Intentional spending becomes all the more important in these spaces. Clise points out the lasting impacts of intentional spending on immigrant and refugee owned businesses. She explains the generational impact of intentional spending, “It's the hopes and dreams that they have for their kids in terms of access to opportunity above and beyond what they had". When consumers support small businesses, they are supporting not just the business owners, but an entire family, which in some cases can mean supporting their access to necessary things like education.

    One answer to spending intentionally, according to Clise is, "shifting from transactional to intentional spending culture is part of the solution." That is the point behind her website Intentionalist. Consumers do not have to go out looking for minority-owned businesses to support, she has done that work already. Through shoppers will find many minority-owned businesses in their neighborhoods, cities, and beyond. Intentional spenders can be specific in what they’re looking for, whether they want to shop specifically from an Asian-owned business, Black-owned business, or an LGBTQ+ owned business, Intentionalist has tools to sort by business type.

    As the nation continues to come out of the COVID pandemic, and as neighborhoods have seen local small business shutter doors, one after the other, it is especially important now more than ever to support local small and minority owned businesses. Healthy neighborhoods and communities are built around healthy small businesses – which is why spending intentionally matters most.


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  • OMA&D Staff Spotlight - Hugo

    January 24, 2022

    Photo of Hugo Garcia Villa

    The University of Washington has no shortage of students, faculty, and staff who exemplify the ways in which we fulfil our public promise. These extraordinary people do this through service to others across the state in their jobs at the university, and also through volunteerism in their life away from campus.

    Meet Hugo, OMA&D's coordinator for Leadership Without Borders! Hugo came to the U.S. at 2 years old as an undocumented minor. His life experiences reflect ways in which undocumented individuals around the country live in constant uncertainty. He has also recognized the strengths of advocacy, "We have power in many other things, in our voices and advocating for ourselves," Hugo says. He now channels what he has learned into supporting and celebrating undocumented students at the UW.

    Hugo didn't always want to do social work, earning his degrees in business and human resources management. He was given the opportunity to do community work with youth, saying, "I've always had a passion to work with youth." All of his work both inside and outside of UW, has taught him so much about himself and others. Hugo defines the importance of his work as "providing access, support, and amplifying voices because a lot of these kids may feel really alone."

    When not working advocating for undocumented students at UW, Hugo volunteers in his broader community. Much of his volunteer work is with the organization Friends Of Youth as a youth counselor who works with foster kids, many of who had been detained at the border. Through doing this work, he has been able to provide resources to and support the young people who needed it. This allows him to serve his community and show he truly believes in the future of the kids that he works with.

    Hugo is an inspiration to those around him, and a shining example of fulfilling our public promise to serve. #UWServes

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  • Student Blog Update: Our First Few Days in Brisbane

    August 26, 2018

    Brisbane sign

    Sydney was a great time for all of us to take it easy, bond, and do all the standard Australia tourist-y things we wanted to do (see: obligatory Sydney Opera House picture in each person’s camera roll).

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  • Student Blog Update: Get to Know The Whole Crew!

    August 21, 2018

    Now that you guys have gotten to know Lunden and me pretty well, it’s only fair that we give everyone else on this trip a fair chance. We asked the students and faculty with us...

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  • Student Blog Update: First Days Down Under

    August 20, 2018

    Cara and Lunder on Bondi Beach

    G’day mates! I’m here to update you on our trip. When we first arrived to Australia we stayed in a youth hostel in Sydney, New South Wales. The hostel had a restaurant attached...

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  • Student Blog Update: Getting to Know Australian Blogger Lunden Harris

    August 17, 2018

    Lunden Harris with pink hair

    Hi! My name is Lunden Harris and I will be one of two study abroad bloggers keeping you updated on our adventure down under! My 2018 UW STEM Study Abroad group will be studying at Queensland University of Technology in Brisbane, Australia.

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  • Student Blog Update: Getting to Know Australian Blogger Cara Mischinski

    August 11, 2018

    UW sophomore Cara Mischinski is preparing to depart for Brisbane, Australia with the OMA&D and LSAMP-affiliated exploration seminar and is sharing regular updates on our Student Blog throughout the trip.

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  • Student Blog Update: Greetings from Australia

    September 11, 2016

    After our first day of data collection, we went out in the water to check out the docks and try to find sea stars. We also found some neat organisms on the way there. Here is Maria with the viewer.

    I must admit that I have not been keeping up with blogging lately because although life in Seattle is fast, life in Australia has been incredibly jam packed in the best way possible!

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  • Student Blog Update: Initiate! - Week One at Brisbane

    August 28, 2016

    Kevin and Dusty shaking hands

    UW student Kevin Soukiazian is currently in Brisbane, Australia with an OMA&D-affiliated exploration seminar. During the group’s time “down under,” Kevin will be sharing regular blog updates starting with his first entry.

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  • Student Blog Update: Week One in Australia

    August 26, 2016

    Viviana Castillo with a kangaroo

    UW student Viviana Castillo is currently in Brisbane, Australia with the OMA&D-affiliated exploration seminar studying how autonomous robotic systems can be used for biological monitoring purposes.

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  • Student Blog Update: Day One - Campus Tour!

    August 26, 2016

    All of the students on our study-abroad trip walking through the QUT campus. I am the person farthest right (I have the black t-shirt on).

    UW student Natasha Aurora Van Damme is currently in Brisbane, Australia with the OMA&D-affiliated exploration seminar studying how autonomous robotic systems can be used for biological monitoring purposes.

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  • Student Blog Update: A Whole New City! (For the Weekend)

    September 16, 2015

    (From left to right) Daniel Corona, Anna Pendleton (lower), Nicole Riley (upper) and Lara Millman (myself) walking around the Gold Coast.

    Following the events at SERF (still so happy about the flying-not-catching-fire-actually-working thing), the group and I traveled down to the Gold Coast for our free weekend.

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  • Student Blog Update: A Happy Working Song (While Working 9-to-5)

    September 13, 2015

    Lara Millman brightened featured image

    As the title implies, this post is primarily about the work we’re doing down here! For all those unaware of the actual point of this little excursion of ours down under, we’ve come to Australia in order to study the use of UAS (Unmanned Aerial Systems…popularly referred to as drones) in improving precision agriculture techniques.

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  • Student Blog Update: Australia Post Two - Into the Bush

    September 6, 2015


    Alright, weekend one-point-five (I’m counting Melbourne as a .5): done! And what a busy one it was. We spent all day Saturday wandering around Stradbroke Island and all day Sunday in the Tambourine Rainforest.

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  • Student Blog Update: Week One - A Report from Under the Equator

    August 28, 2015

    Lara Millman

    UW student Lara Millman is currently in Brisbane, Australia with the OMA&D-affiliated exploration seminar studying how autonomous robotic systems can be used for biological monitoring purposes.

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  • Student Blog Update: Australia Wrap-Up

    August 1, 2013

    Downtown Sydney at night

    It’s been a marvelous trip and I’m sad to see it at an end. We finished our research and presented our work to all the wonderful folks who helped and encouraged us along. It was an experience of a lifetime and definitely am very happy to have done it.

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  • Student Blog Update: The Great Barrier Reef

    August 1, 2013

    Haneen Al-Hassani Underwater

    What should I say about the Great Barrier Reef…IT WAS AWESOME! We all ended up snorkeling…I was a bit chicken so I stayed back but everyone loved it and it was so fun watching the group float on that water. I remember the last group saying the weather wasn’t all that great but it was marvelous when we went up there.

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  • Student Blog Update: Barbados Wrap-Up

    July 22, 2013


    Today, most of the students from the Barbados program headed back to Washington. We bid adieu as a few of us are spending some extra time here. The end of the program was filled with memorable experiences and even a few surprises!

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  • Student Blog Update: Research in Moreton Bay

    July 12, 2013

    Boat going in

    The day dawned and we packed, got in the cars and went down to Moreton Bay. The view from the ferry was beautiful. We got to Moreton Bay Research Center and dropped our bags and the groups got ready to set out and gather data.

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  • Student Blog Update: Busy Week in Brisbane

    July 12, 2013

    Virtual Aquarium

    Hey guys! It’s been one busy week! We went to visit the aboriginal museum and learned quite a bit of Australian history. The aboriginals are the natives of Australia and were treated unfairly for quite some time. They’ve only recently gained rights – around the mid to late 1900s

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  • Student Blog Update: Connecting with Barbados

    July 6, 2013

    Professor Pedro Welch

    It’s hard to believe that two weeks of the program have already gone by! We are getting familiar with the island-luckily for my poor sense of direction, it is only 20 miles long by 14 miles wide. As one saying goes, “Barbados is 20 miles long and a smile wide.”

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  • Student Blog Update: Money Conflicts

    July 5, 2013

    Australian $20 bill

    Money—an aspect of life that affects people no matter where they may end up, anywhere across the world. When I first arrived at the airport in Brisbane, Australia the lobby was full of different ATM’s and currency exchange locations ready to charge a hefty fee in order to change one’s money to the local currency.

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  • Student Blog Update: Culture Shock

    June 29, 2013

    Brisbane, The River City

    Australia—the mission to make it to this amazing continent was extremely long and exhausting. After spending about seven total hours in airports waiting for my flights and about 16 hours in the air I finally made it to my destination Brisbane, Australia.

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  • Student Blog Update: Meet Australia Blogger Luis Gonzales

    June 28, 2013

    Luis Gonzales

    Hello everyone, my name is Luis Gonzales and I just completed my freshman year here at the University of Washington. I am pursuing a degree in either Civil or Mechanical Engineering and have found an amazing opportunity to gain more experience in engineering—an Australian Study Abroad!

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  • Student Blog Update: Getting Settled in Barbados

    June 27, 2013

    Barbados Bound!

    We arrived safe and sound at the University of the West Indies at Cave Hill on Monday. A combination of jet lag, heat, and genuine awe had me in a lingering dream-state… From our first swim in the Caribbean sea, to watching a breathtaking sunrise from our dorm rooms, those first experiences felt surreal.

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  • Student Blog Update: Arriving in Australia

    June 26, 2013

    Haneen Al-Hassain Arrives to Australia

    Hey Readers! Hopefully I end up being your guys’ favorite blogger. I’m part of an amazing group going to Australia with me. I was pretty excited to go to Brisbane for my Study Abroad and afterwards we’ll be spending two days in Sydney. So exciting!

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  • Student Blog Update: Meet Barbados Blogger Patrick Okocha

    June 25, 2013

    Patrick Okocha

    Hello everyone, my name is Patrick Okocha and I am a senior at the University of Washington double-majoring in English Literature and Communications. I was born here in Seattle but relocated to Sacramento, CA in 2004 when I was in the eighth-grade.

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  • Student Blog Update: Meet Barbados Blogger Riley Taitingfong

    June 14, 2013

    Riley Taitingfong Head Shot

    Hello, my name is Riley Taitingfong. As the spring quarter draws to a close, I can now say that I am a senior! I was born abroad but I have lived in Washington for the majority of my life. I graduated from Marysville-Pilchuck High School in 2010...

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  • Tahiti Week 4: Coconut Day, Last Hike and Surf Competition!

    September 4, 2012

    Group picture at the waterfall!

    Our last week in Tahiti consisted of variety of activities. We dedicated a whole day to learning about coconuts. Coconuts are used in every way possible here, they are used to start a fire, to eat, for body/hair products, you name it.

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  • Tahiti Week 3: WATERRRR!

    September 4, 2012

    The cave!

    Week three was a bit more relaxed. We spent the majority of our time out in the water. We started off at a cave by the name of Grotte De Maraa. The cave’s arched ceiling creates and optical illusion that makes the cave look smaller than what it really is. It is a major attraction here in Tahiti.

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  • Tahiti Week 2: Dance, Dance History and Tattoos

    September 4, 2012

    Museum Costume Collection

    Week two started off with practice from the time we woke up to the time we had dinner. Our dance practices were for two full days, Monday and Tuesday. One of the crew members, Falea, is very involved in Tahitian dancing and volunteered to teach us. We learned a total of 13 dances.

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  • Saying Good-bye to Ghana

    August 23, 2012

    glass before it's melted

    After a quick walking tour through the village we headed over to another nearby village to learn how they recycle material to make beads. There are actually many different ways to make them. Some methods include crushing the glass with stone into a fine powder and mixing different consistencies of glass.

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  • Ghanaian Dance Performance

    August 22, 2012

    University of Washington

    Here is a glimpse at Tiffany Armijo, Gladys Reyes and Avalon Valencia performing their final project for the study abroad trip to Ghana...

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  • Final Projects

    August 17, 2012

    performing for final project

    Today we presented our final projects and everyone’s work was amazing! We had a variation of presentations including spoken word, dance, videos, studies, food and musical performances that all embodied our experiences here with the people and the culture in Ghana.

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  • Powerful Visit to Cape Coast

    August 9, 2012

    Kakum Rain Forest

    Today we got back from our field trip to Cape Coast. We got to go to two Slave Castles, the Kakum Rainforest and a small village for some community service. We also got to stay at Coconut Grove, a very fancy place that was right on the ocean! I felt like I was a rich woman staying there, it was fun staying at a ritzy place like that.

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  • Visit to Cape Coast

    August 7, 2012

    we did it

    Today we traveled to Cape Coast, a large town situated on the Gulf of Guinea, to visit the Cape Coast Castle. The Cape Coast Castle was one of the 30 castles and forts built along Ghana’s coastline that were used in the transatlantic slave trade. While some of the castles started off as trading posts for gold and other goods, the Cape Coast Castle was built specifically for the slave trade.

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  • Barbados Wrap Up

    August 7, 2012

    swimming with turtles

    A wise man once told me, “We are not counting days anymore, we are losing them.” We are in the final days of the final week of the program and we have to make the most of them.

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  • Barbados Highlights - Weeks 3 and 4

    August 6, 2012


    At the beginning of the third week, we had the privilege to cook with Mrs. Reid. From her cooking lesson, I learned different ways spices are used here in Barbados and among my peers. We used mild peppers to add flavor to the ground beef.

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  • Education in Ghana

    August 2, 2012


    For the last two days here, we have been doing community service with the Cheerful Hearts Foundation. We had to split up into three groups after our orientation last week. The groups were the Child Labor group, the Public Health group and the Teaching group.

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  • Community Service

    August 2, 2012


    Since the Ghana program is offered through the School of Social Welfare we participate in a week-long community service project through Cheerful Hearts, a service based organization dedicated to the education of Ghanaian children.

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  • La Orana! First Week in Tahiti!

    August 1, 2012


    Our first week in Tahiti has been quite eventful! We focused mainly on oral and written traditions. In the Tahitian culture, most traditions are passed down from generation to generation, orally and vertically rather than horizontally.

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  • Ngoni

    July 30, 2012

    Working on the instruments

    This week we had a lot of free time to explore the village, rest and take care of laundry. So I took the opportunity to get started on my final project with my partners, Charmaine and Tracy. The ngoni performance we had on our first night really inspired me to turn the experience into my final project.

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  • Ghana Arrival

    July 30, 2012

    Ariel Davis Welcome to Ghana

    We made it to Ghana! The Sankofa II group landed July 17, 2012. In Accra, Ghana! This was the first welcome sign! We are all full of excitement!!

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  • Our Trip to the City of Accra

    July 24, 2012

    courtney_in_front of statue

    Yesterday we went on an all day field trip to the city of Accra. We got to go to the Kwame Nkruma Mausoleum, the Art Market, the W.E.B. Du Bois Center, and then we had dinner at a restaurant called Asanka Local.

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  • New Experiences in Ghana

    July 21, 2012

    Ghanian market

    Today was very full and eventful. We visited the burial of Ghana’s first President, W.E.B Dubois’ house and a museum that featured the history of the people who have inhabited Ghana. It was interesting to see how closely tied our country’s history is to Ghanaian history...

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  • Meet Tahiti Blogger Perla Flores

    July 20, 2012

    Meet Tahiti Blogger Perla Flores

    Hello everyone! My name is Perla Flores. I will be a sophomore this upcoming fall at the University of Washington where I plan on majoring in either Law, Society and Justice or Business. I am from a small town up north called Marysville.

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  • Akwaaba

    July 19, 2012


    Akwaaba means "Welcome." "Medasi" means thank you. Those are two of the first words that I learned in the Ghanaian language upon arrival. As soon as you walk into the airport (after getting through immigration and the 18 passport checks), you are greeted again and again with Akwaba.

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  • We're Here!!

    July 18, 2012

    Kafiya, Tiffany, Courtney and Avalon waiting to go through secuirty at Sea Tac

    Getting to Ghana was quite the adventure. We arrived at Sea Tac at 5 a.m. and everyone basically had the same expression on their faces because most of us stayed up so we can knock out on the plane. Our group’s movement through security was kind of slow going...

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  • Meet Tahiti Blogger Veronica Sedano

    July 17, 2012

    Veronica Sedano

    My name is Veronica Sedano and I am a junior at the University of Washington. I plan on majoring in Medical Anthropology and Global Health with a minor in Diversity. I was born in Chelan, Washington and lived in a small town 10 minutes away called Manson.

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  • Barbados Highlights - Weeks 1 and 2

    July 11, 2012

    Barbados Highlights – Weeks 1 and 2

    My first weekend here in Barbados was spent at the Crop Over 2012 Opening Gala. The aroma of delicious food filled the air along with the sound of Barbadian music. Admission was $15 Barbadian dollars ($7.50 USD) and it was well worth it because we got to watch young Barbadians perform at a Youth Talent show.

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  • Another Exciting Week in Australia

    July 10, 2012

    The group in Australia

    Another exciting week Down Unda'!!! This week has been a more fast pace week then most. We are finally starting to get to the nitty, gritty part of the class. We programmed intensely for a couple days and also over the weekend trying to generate graphical representations of data that we created.

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  • Australia Week 2 Review

    July 6, 2012

    Australia Week 2 Review

    Two weeks down already? This is insane. Hey blog readers, hope your summer is going well. The third week is just starting up so I thought I’d give you a review of the second week of our excursion! I don’t even know where to begin.

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  • Meet Ghana Blogger Courtney Hernandez

    June 30, 2012


    My name is Courtney Hernandez and I am a junior at the University of Washington. I grew up in Selah, Washington, a small town on the Eastern part of Washington state and attended Selah High School.

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  • Barbados Week One

    June 29, 2012


    Twenty-one University of Washington students left Seattle and made it to Barbados in one piece. On the way we laughed together, ate together, and survived the 10-hour flight together. As a group we expected sunlight, not for it to be raining like Seattle weather.

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  • Australia Week One

    June 27, 2012


    Week one of the University of Washington Study Abroad Australia is officially over! So many fun things have happened in just the first week. One of the highlights by far was snorkeling the Great Barrier Reef at Lady Elliot Island! To see so much beautiful marine life was amazing.

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  • Meet Ghana Blogger Ariel Davis

    June 27, 2012

    Ariel Davis head shot

    My name is Ariel Davis, and I’m currently a senior at University of Washington. I’m a young 22 year-old who loves adventure and experiencing new things. I was born and raised in Seattle, Washington, and attended John F. Kennedy Memorial High School.

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  • Introducing the Australia Study Abroad Crew - Part I

    June 26, 2012

    Seth Martin

    Hey blog readers! Seth again, writing from Brisbane, Australia! It’s only been six days but to be perfectly honest it feels like I’ve been here a lot longer! So much has happened, that Lloyd and I have decided to blog more than once a week to keep you in the loop and to make our lives easier.

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  • Introducing the Australia Study Abroad Crew - Part II

    June 26, 2012

    Jonathan Ellington

    Kristi is the Australia 2012 Program Director and an Associate Professor in the Department of Aeronautics and Astronautics at the University of Washington. Kristi received her degrees from Boston University and Harvard and has been avidly involved in research for the majority of her career.

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  • Meet Australia Blogger Seth Martin

    June 21, 2012

    Meet Australia Blogger Seth Martin

    Hey all! My name is Seth Martin and I’m serving as one of the student bloggers for the Australia 2012 study abroad program for the University of Washington! I’m from the small, scenic town of Gleed, Washington (right next to Yakima and Selah for those of you East-Siders).

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  • Meet Barbados Blogger Danny Herrera

    June 20, 2012

    Meet Barbados Blogger Danny Herrera

    My name is Danny Herrera and I am currently a senior at the University of Washington majoring in American ethnic studies with a minor in Education, Learning, and Society. I was born and raised in Yakima, Washington, and graduated from A.C. Davis High School in 2009.

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  • Meet Ghana Blogger Kamaria Carnes

    June 19, 2012

    Meet Ghana Blogger Kamaria Carnes

    I was born and raised in Everett, just a quick 20 minute drive north from the UW campus where I’m currently majoring in psychology with a minor in diversity. I attended Mariner High School and since graduating I have taken up a hobby of traveling.

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  • Meet Australia Blogger Lloyd Pasion

    June 18, 2012

    Meet Australia Blogger Lloyd Pasion

    I am currently an undergraduate working on a civil engineering degree at the University of Washington. I have a strong interest in civil and environmental engineering, and also a strong passion for green and sustainable technology. I was born and raised in Honolulu, Hawaii, and moved to Seattle, Wash., in the fall of 2008. I enjoy sports, hiking, playing the guitar, and I love golfing.

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  • Scenes from Tahiti

    August 30, 2011

    Scenes from Tahiti

    The group participating in the 2011 OMA&D-affiliated study abroad program to Tahiti, led by OMA&D Associate Vice President Dr. Gabriel Gallardo and Counseling Services Interim Director Val Espania, recently returned to Seattle. Here are a few photos from their trip...

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  • Bridgetown Market in Barbados

    August 30, 2011

    Bridgetown Market in Barbados

    Today was the first day of the Bridgetown Market at Spring Gardens so almost all of us headed down to attend the festivities! It was a beautiful day and the market went on for about a mile (if I had to give a rough estimate). There were booths or jewelry, other arts and crafts, paintings, plants, flowers, toys, Barbados-themed paraphernalia, and food and drink stands of course.

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  • Cape Coast in Ghana

    August 27, 2011

    Celebration 2013

    This was the visit I had been anticipating for most of the trip - Cape Coast, which is where there are several slave castles. These were places where African people were chained in dark dungeons, beaten, made to urinate, suffer and defecate as they were watched by merciless white men.

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  • More from Barbados

    August 26, 2011

    More from Barbados

    Today we woke up bright and early to go to the Sunbury Plantation House where we received a tour. It was really amazing to see all of the artifacts that had been saved since the 1800s. The guide showed us the bedrooms, a room full of old fashioned cameras, old shotguns, a Bible from the 1800s, and other random things.

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  • Barbados Update

    August 26, 2011

    Barbados Update

    Today was a great day! We left bright and early and loaded up into the tour bus to take a ride through different parts of the island. One of our first stops was at St. James Anglican Parish Church which was the first church built in Barbados. It was so cool to see a church that has huge historical meaning for the country.

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  • Parliament and the Commission of Human Rights and Administrative Justice

    August 22, 2011

    Parliament and the Commission of Human Rights and Administrative Justice

    Touring parliament and the Commission of Human Rights and Administrative Justice (CHRAJ) in the Ghanaian capitol, Accra, was one of the greatest days on this trip thus far. We learned a ton about Ghana’s history and it’s progression as a nation since independence in 1957.

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  • Wetlands Boat Ride at Bojo Beach

    August 19, 2011

    Wetlands Boat Ride at Bojo Beach

    Being welcomed into Ghana was a completely new and exciting experience for everyone in our group. We didn’t know what to expect, however, we were brimming with joy and excitement as we found a wetlands boat ride awaiting us.

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  • Barbados' Crop Over Festival

    August 17, 2011

    Barbados’ Crop Over Festival

    These last couple of days were nothing short of majestic. We had the amazing opportunity to be present in Barbados for "The Sweetest Summer Festival" called Crop Over. Crop Over was such a unique and a once in a lifetime experience.

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  • Ghana Update

    August 15, 2011

    University of Washington

    Culture: On one our first nights here we attended a cultural night at a local club in the village. There were all sorts of traditional dances going on and drums talking. Even before we arrived you cold here the music as we walked down the streets.

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  • Barbados Week 1 - Part II

    August 5, 2011

    Barbados Week 1 – Part II

    Our excursions the first week were amazing! We toured around the island and saw many sites, old sites that trace back to the 18th century. Seeing the beautiful waters riding on the coast was exhilarating and an opportunity of a lifetime.

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  • Barbados Week 1 - Part I

    August 5, 2011

    Barbados Week 1 – Part I

    Hello everyone from the beautiful island of Barbados! I am so honored to have had the privilege to explore this unique island and all the wonders it has to share. Being on a study abroad trip is more than the imagination can display, but taking a first-hand look personally, it is truly an amazing experience.

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  • Meet Ghana Blogger Crystal Florez

    August 1, 2011

    Meet Ghana Blogger Crystal Florez

    A little bit about me: My name is Crystal Florez and I am a proud enrolled member of the White Earth Minnesota Ojibwe tribe. I am majoring in American Indian Studies and will be graduating in the Spring of 2012.

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  • Scenes from Barbados

    August 1, 2011

    Scenes from Barbados

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  • Checking In From Barbados

    August 1, 2011

    Checking In From Barbados

    Today was a free day so we went to the beach again of course! There are so many beaches to choose from in Barbados and each offer their own unique vibe and beauty. We decided to start at Paradise Beach near UWI (University of West Indies-Cave Hill Campus) where we are...

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  • Arriving in Ghana

    July 29, 2011

    Arriving in Ghana

    Hi, my name is Sierra Stewart. I am from Tacoma, Washington and I am currently a junior majoring in Sociocultural Anthropology. This trip is such a blessing for me as an African American. Not only having the opportunity to go to an entirely different country, but...

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  • Adjusting to the Island Life

    July 24, 2011


    It’s been 10 days since I arrived on the beautiful island of Barbados. I must say it is everything I anticipated it would be and so much more. The island itself is amazingly gorgeous. The beaches are some of the most breathtaking in the world.

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  • Out & About In Barbados

    July 24, 2011

    Out & About In Barbados

    Bridgetown is the capital of Barbados and also shopping central. It’s tons of fun, especially going to the local shops where everything is a bit cheaper and also more authentic. It’s easy to see the American influence on a lot of things, especially more of the high-end clothing.

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  • Meet the Ghana Student Bloggers

    July 21, 2011

    Meet the Ghana Student Bloggers

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  • Getting Settled in Barbados

    July 18, 2011

    Getting Settled in Barbados

    Greetings from Barbados! Let me start off by saying that it is absolutely gorgeous here. The weather is humid and hot, but manageable. The first night here was difficult. Our dorms don’t have air conditioning so it was hard to sleep, but when we woke up we had the most beautiful view of the ocean.

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  • Meet the Barbados Student Bloggers

    July 17, 2011

    Meet the Barbados Student Bloggers

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  • Welcome!

    July 14, 2011

    by OMA&D Community & Public Relations

    Welcome to the Office of Minority Affairs and Diversity Student Blog! This new page will provide an opportunity for current and future students, faculty, staff, alumni, community members, and friends to learn more about OMA&D programs and services through the first-hand accounts of our students. The blog will kick-off soon with entries from several students participating in OMA&D-affiliated study abroad programs this summer. A group traveling to Barbados left today (July 14), while the group traveling to Ghana will depart on July 24. Be sure to check the blog frequently to read about their exciting experiences. As the school year progresses, the blog will continue to serve as a voice for students taking part in a variety of OMA&D programs. Thanks for reading!

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