As I wrap up my fifth week of my CEA virtual internship in Paris, I can’t help but notice the power of the human connection. Many people fall into the trap of assuming that cultural differences are synonymous with human disconnection, and admittedly, I once fell into this trap. Many people believe that our differences can prevent us from forming a relationship and connection with others. Through the work with my supervisor in Paris, I’ve realized that our differences bring us closer together. Sure, life in Paris and New York City are drastically different, and our ways of life are unique, but I’ve noticed the bond we’ve developed through our expressions of emotion. We laugh, we smile, we debate, we express our personalities. That’s something that we all have in common. Through these expressions, we formulate a sense of comfort around each other. Interestingly, our differences are what bring us closer together. That’s one of the many things I’ll always cherish about this experience.
In my virtual internship, I have one coworker: my supervisor. Although my supervisor is my only colleague, I can feel my sense of the human connection come to life. For example, we’re currently in the production stage of a podcast on the importance of meditation and self-care for students moving abroad to Paris. The brainstorming and development stages require a lot of thoughts and ideas. As such, in our weekly meetings, my supervisor and I bounce ideas off each other, almost like it’s a tennis match. Back and forth, back and forth. Our different worldviews influence the formation of our own meaning that different perspectives have the capacity to shift worldviews. Being exposed to different viewpoints helps us understand ourselves better. That’s interesting; I never thought about it that way. This endless curiosity results in the establishment of an unbreakable bond: the human connection.
Dennis Cogan is the Spring 2021 CEA MOJO Blogger in Paris, France, and is currently studying at Fordham University.