Student blogs highlight CYAF India study abroad

CYAF student Joseph Byrd takes time to reflect on his experience in India. “It is important to live, learn, and move ahead; living in the past is a fruitless journey. I wait with bated breath to experience what happens next.”

Student blogs highlight CYAF India study abroad

13 Mar 2017    By Kari Eller

Sarah Erwin spends time with an Anubhuti 7th grade classroom
Sarah Erwin spends time with an Anubhuti 7th grade classroom

On Jan. 30, Child, Youth and Family Studies (CYAF) students Joseph Byrd, Kara Cruickshank, Sarah Erwin and Jessica Fetrow left behind family, friends and the comforts of their lives in Lincoln, as they boarded a plane headed to Jalgaon, India. The group is now in their second month of the trip and with just a few more weeks to go, their blog posts continue to pour in, taking us with them on the emotional rollercoaster of their travels. The posts provide unique insights into Indian culture and what Byrd called “the grand influence that the late Bhavarlal Jain had on his community, friends, and family.”

Kara Cruickshank learned about marriage customs as Anubhuti teachers drew Mendhi on her hands.
Kara Cruickshank learned about marriage customs as Anubhuti teachers drew Mendhi on her hands.

Immersed day in and day out, the lives of these four CYAF students are being transformed and enriched by their host culture. Taking in the sights, smells and tastes of India, Joseph, Kara, Sarah and Jessica are sharing and truly accompanying those around them. Their posts transport us into a school day for children full of math, science and language classes, singing, dancing, drawing, playing cricket and carrom, and meditation. They take us traveling more than 27 hours, shoulder-to-shoulder on a train ride to the Himalayas and to tea gardens in Dharamsala. They challenge us to think about our culture as seen through the eyes of others. Learning about families through marriage customs and food rituals, the group shares how this trip is and will continue to impact their service, teaching, and research. 

Joseph Byrd traveled to the Himalayas with ninth-standard students
Joseph Byrd traveled to the Himalayas with ninth-standard students
Anubhuti students help teach Jessica Fetrow proper yoga and meditation poses
Anubhuti students help teach Jessica Fetrow proper yoga and meditation poses

Their pictures and adventures give us a glimpse inside an incredible experience and mark an important moment in their career development. This is the fourth year that CYAF has teamed up with Jain Irrigation Systems, Ltd. to sponsor an international engagement experience in Jalgaon, India. This immersion experience connects University of Nebraska–Lincoln students with administration, teachers and students in Anubhuti Schools. Anubhuti I is a boarding school for children grades 5-11 (ages 10-17), sitting on 100 acres of land adjacent to the serene Jain Hills campus. Anubhuti II is a day school for elementary school children (ages 5-10) who lack opportunity for high-quality education.

The CYAF Anubhuti Blog is worth a visit for anyone wanting to explore education abroad or just to follow along on this adventure. Their blog posts also serve as an important resource for other College of Education and Human Sciences students who might be considering a CEHS Global eXperience.

CEHS students travel around the world to study abroad every year. Travels this year include the United Kingdom, Brazil, Nicaragua, India, Costa Rica, Ethiopia, Dubai, New York City, Amsterdam and China. Visit the CEHS Global eXperience website to learn more about these trips. Additional education abroad resources can be found at Nebraska’s Education Abroad website.


College of Education and Human Sciences
Child, Youth and Family Studies