My name is Imani Stafford and I’m a 22 year old college student attending The Lincoln University of Pennsylvania. Throughout my life, I have visited Punta Cana, Dominican Republic, Playa Del Carmen, Mexico and more recently, Jamaica. As a child, I also went on a family cruise where we visited Aruba, St. Johns, and the nearby islands. Within the U.S, I’ve been to New Jersey, Puerto Rico, Florida, Massachusetts, Georgia, North Carolina, New York, Maryland, Delaware, and Virginia. In the upcoming years of my life, I plan on visiting Thailand, Hong Kong, Tokyo, Dubai, Turks and Caicos, Cape Town, Egypt, London, Paris, Italy, and all of the Caribbean Islands.
Although I’ve been to plenty of places, I realize that I really enjoy traveling out of the country. When I went to the Dominican Republic it was for my 16th birthday and I had the time of my life. Before I went, I was a little nervous because I was going with my aunt and my cousin who are both much older than me but, surprisingly, I had a great time. During my stay, I lived at this huge resort which was actually like a small town. It had grocery stores, nail salons, spas, hair salons, and really everything you needed. There was no need for my family and I to leave our resort during the trip, but being as adventurous as we are, we did anyway. We did multiple excursions like snorkeling in a natural pool, cutting sugar cane with a machete, and going shopping in the town.
I went to Mexico with one of my best friends during spring break of 2017. This was probably my favorite trip I’ve had thus far. Our parents were skeptical on letting us go because only the two of us went, but they were relieved after we explained to them why we thought we should go alone. In Mexico, we went shopping, went to bars, went zip lining, snorkeling in underwater caves, and drove ATV’s. This trip was literally the highlight of my life! I felt so carefree and unbothered with the stress I dealt with back in the United States.
I love traveling because, once I’m somewhere else I don’t think about home. I fully indulge myself in the culture and people around me and I learn a lot doing that. I’ve learned how to connect and talk to others, despite our first language. I’ve learned to dance bachata, some Jamaican dance, make herbal tea and I have also learned how to make Mexican corn (totally forgot the name). I encourage everyone to travel and get a glimpse of life outside of their origin country. You never know what you may find out about yourself.
I recently was given the opportunity to travel and study abroad in Jamaica in Summer 2018, and I had the time of my life. In Jamaica, I studied Special Topics: Travel Videography where I learned “the research, writing, and digital production and editing skills necessary to complete the semester project.” Unlike my other trips, we lived like locals while in Jamaica
and was in contact with the locals the whole trip. I visited for almost an entire month, so naturally I felt like I lived there! I loved Jamaica as a whole, but my favorite parish was definitely Negril! I’m very grateful for the opportunity and this trip definitely gave me the experience and insight on what I would like to do after graduation, and that is to become a TV Personality and business owner.
With the help of this course, I learned some idioms and do’s and dont’s from other places that I intend to visit. The tourism group and individual presentations taught me a lot and I’m glad that those presentations were included in the course. I will definitely use what I´ve learned to pick my next destination and plan my itinerary.