VU University, Black Europe Summer School, Echo, and New Urban Collective

Four undergraduate students from the University of California, Los Angeles, were selected to participate in an exchange program with Vrije Universiteit in Amsterdam. We attended graduate-level courses at the 7th annual Summer School on Black Europe, hosted by the International Institute for Research and Education (IIRE) in collaboration with The Center of Study and Investigation for Global Dialogues in Barcelona, Spain. This intensive two-week program, scheduled from June 23rd to July 4th, 2014, focused on the origins of Black Europe and examined the impact of its legacies on current policies, social organizations, and legislation. The students were chosen based on their ability to address these inclusivity issues through their own area of study. I was lucky to be one of those undergraduates chosen in the Summer of 2014.

We were able to participate in the Black Europe Summer School, a seminar class that discusses the African Diaspora in Europe. We also engaged in dialogues concerning various Dutch cultural issues and policy planning with the student body and various young leaders. We also collaborated with service organizations such as Echo and New Urban Collective. One of the highlights of the trip is discussing the state of the Red Light District with the former alderman-central.