Jennifer Duffecy
Psychology Major
North Central College


 My trip to the Balkans was a collection of unforgettable experiences for me, but when asked what was the most memorable thing, I find myself blurting out, “The people!” 

 Admittedly, I am a psychology major and my project centered on the psychology of ethnic conflict, but I don’t think it was simply my interest in human behavior that made the people we encountered so special.  The whole experience was filled with incredible people, starting out with Dr. Fisher and Dr. Fowler.  Despite the difficulties in dealing with so many people, cultures, and variables, Dr. Fisher and Dr. Fowler managed to coordinate and educate us all in our chosen fields. 

They introduced us to some wise and wonderful people from the region.  The people that we were able to interview were so knowledgeable and so interested in sharing that knowledge with us.  I was touched at how quickly these people opened their minds, and their hearts, to us.  From answering questions to expressing emotions to sharing dinner, the people we met with each gave me different perspectives and ideas.  This goes not only for the people we interviewed, but also, the people we found along the way, like the friendly hotel employee and the kind store clerk.  

For a region that is supposedly filled with conflict and hatred, I was touched by the amount of genuine kindness that I saw.  The memories of the wonderful people that I met will always stay with me.