Preparing for the trip to the Texas/Mexico border has been exciting, it’s getting very close to time to go! The opportunity to attend this trip will cause many great changes, not only to me as a person but to the way I will strive to practice forensic anthropology in the future. The mission of this trip is important to me not only because I will be learning new techniques and applying those I already know to a different environment. But also because I feel strongly about the humanitarian crisis that we are able to lend some assistance to while in Texas. I feel like the ability to combine both forensic anthropology and humanitarian work in practice is very important for those in the field to experience and getting to do so as a student is invaluable.
I expect to face not only emotional challenges but physical ones as well. I am a bit nervous, as I have yet to experience anything like this before. I know that through the preparations I have done like speaking with those who have been on the trip before and reading many different materials related to the trip there is only so much I can gather. Experiencing it first-hand will be different but I believe that I have done what I can to be as prepared as possible. I believe the biggest physical challenge I will face will be the temperature. I am not often in environments where the temperature is as high as it is predicted to be in Falfurrias while we are there (high of 104!). This will be a challenge but I believe I am well prepared to face it.
I am excited to work with the current team for this trip! I have had the ability to work with each person in class or while doing casework on campus but I am interested to see how we grow and work together in this new situation. It may be a bit of a challenge at first to adjust to the new situation but I think that we will all work well together and accomplish what we have set out to do. I have heard many amazing things about Eddie and Don who will be showing us the ropes while in Texas and I am very excited to meet and work with them as well!
Although there may be challenges I will face while in Texas it is nothing compared to what the migrants are being forced to face. I am happy to face them if it means I am able to help in any way. The experiences I will have and the memories I will make will stay with me forever and I am very grateful for that.