Bonnie Mendoza Millo

Philippines, 2013, Magister Spring Program

I chose Chile because I wanted to know the similarities and differences between the two countries.

When I came to Chile I met a country that has plenty similarities with the Philippines;  they were both colonized by Spain, and share the same ocean. They also have a relatively similar story, through the connection of the dictatorships of the past Presidents Marcos and Pinochet,who were also friends.

Another reason why I came to Chile is because I feel that the development of the “indigenous cause” is ahead compared to what’s in the Philippines. The focus of development I was interested in studying was cultural identity, territorial development and regional planning.

I never imagined Chilean people could be welcoming. On my first night, I arrived to a restaurant but was really looking for another one, and the girl who served me just called a taxi to take me to the place I was originally looking for. I think Chileans generally have this willingness to help without expecting anything in return. Additionally, I think it’s great that police are a totally reliable institution; if something happens you can trust and ask for help.

The families and the people here in general are willing to teach the language. I appreciate that, since is very different from other countries.

Finally what I like most is that the Southern University campus is on an island. I love the idea to relax looking across the river thinking “what a wonderful place!”