República Dominicana Continuó

SMBA ’15 did not simply travel around from place to place in the DR looking at various communities, the cohort interacted as much as possible to gain first-hand knowledge about each individuals situation and their life. Whether it was fluent Spanish to basic Spanish to hand gestures, every student was fully emerged in the DR way of life. At the orphanage and training facilities the cohort ate the same meal as those around them, rice and beans, kipes, mangu, plantains, etc. A game of baseball was played twice during the trip, giving students who had never swung a bat the opportunity to learn and to play alongside the Dominicans on their fields that meant everything to them. Students also had the opportunity to learn Dominican dances like the merengue from the Entrena staff that traveled with the cohort. At every turn the cohort was experiencing Dominican culture from the music on the bus rides, to drinking Presidente’s at the beach, to sipping on cafe con leche morning and night. For many, it was their first trip outside of the U.S., for others it was another stamp in their passport. Either way, the trip to the Dominican Republic is one that has touched everyone’s lives in one way or another.

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Interacting with the children of the DR was one of the most fulfilling travel experiences I’ve ever had. Hearing their stories and seeing their cheerful faces made me realize that all humans share similar wants and desires, no matter what our cultural upbringing. I look forward to working as a class to use our business knowledge and skills to work with the people we met to make a positive difference in their lives. –Erika Union

The opportunity to visit the DR for a week was a great success and one of the many aspects of the SDSU Sports MBA program that separates it from other academic programs. This trip was an incredible academic experience, an opportunity to make an impact to a country in need and also a great cohort bonding opportunity. While there was a lot to choose from, my favorite part of the experience was visiting the children in need and spending a day interacting with them. The smiles on the children’s faces helped put things in perspective and will be an experience I will think back to often. If the experience didn’t tear you up, I am not sure what will. –Gary Kavy

The trip to the DR was an amazing experience. For someone who has never been outside of the country prior to this trip it was truly enlightening and unique to be able to draw parallels between the U.S. and the DR. This trip helped put things into perspective for all of us individually and collectively as a cohort. Steve Gera told us early in the year it is up to us to lead and encourage the heart as upcoming leadership in the sports industry. Experiencing a 360 degree view of the impact of baseball on the economics and community of the DR impacted us all in different ways and will help us continue to seek to become better professionals and socially responsible individuals. –Caroline Bartolome

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For my first time being outside of the States, the DR trip was a great first international and eye-opening experience. Opposed to other international trips where people go for pleasure, to go to the DR to see and experience their culture first-hand with their emphasis on baseball, made me bring into perspective the struggles and joys other countries have to deal with daily. To be able to take it all-in and see how much Dominicans rely on baseball to make a living was something I’d go back and do over and over again. The kids left a huge impact on me, and I was glad to have the chance to experience it in the DR and with such a great cohort. –Kimberly Ferrer 

As everyone has said about this trip, the trip was a great experience and allowed us to learn about the Dominican Republic. Prior to the program I worked for a minor league baseball team and had a chance to interact with Latino baseball players. I saw players tick to their own groups. I struggled communicating with some who lacked English skills. I become one of their biggest cheerleaders, but I have never thought about their journey to the U.S. through baseball until now. I’m amazed to hear about where it starts for DR players playing baseball all the time to get out of poverty. For me, most people play a sport because they enjoy it. DR players are pressured to do so much more to make it to the U.S. and play in the Major League. This trip has made me think about what American players can do to support DR players because after all, baseball is a sport that requires teamwork. –Michelle Alipio

It’s hard to try and put together how so many professional players come from a the Dominican Republic, but after getting a chance to witness it firsthand, it’s clear that baseball is deeply embedded in the countries culture. I’m glad we got a chance to see this because it’s something very hard to explain otherwise. –Alex West

It was amazing to experience the Dominican Republic in a role other than a tourist. Seeing the impact of baseball on the island and witnessing what the domincan players experience in their home lives left a strong impact on my heart. Being able to more fully understand what is happening in the Dominican Republic combined with the amazing bonding experience our class had during this trip was what made this trip very memorable. –Sarah Nollner

The best part of the trip was the whole experience. The fact that the trip entailed the entire spectrum on the Dominican Republic was fantastic, we got a full view of what the DR is all about, this to me was a great experience. –Armaan Ahluwalia

After returning home to San Diego yesterday from the Dominican Republic, I reflected on the SDSU Sports MBA 2015 class trip and will carry a lifetime of memories and experiences with me. Before arriving in the Dominican Republic, I read about how beisbol is an enormous part of the Dominican culture, however; one must visit the Dominican Republic to truly get a sense and understanding of how beisbol is a way of life for Dominicans. During our trip not only were we able to visit the San Diego Padres and Mets academies but we also visited diverse places such as the Alta Gracia Apparel factory and an orphanage titled Nuestros Pequenos Hermanos (NPH). Alta Gracia was the first factory to pay its workers a working wage and implement fair labor conditions which enables Alta Gracia employees to provide better living conditions to their families. Now when I wear my SDSU t-shirt with the Alta Gracia logo displayed on the sleeve, that I purchased on campus in January without knowing anything about the company, it will mean more to me after learning what Alta Gracia stands for and knowing that my purchase helped contribute to a better life for their employees. In addition, I also enjoyed interacting with youth at Nuestros Pequenos Hermanos. I began playing ball with two children and then it turned into “monkey in the middle”. While playing with the children, it was not apparent that there was a language barrier and it did not get in the way of us having fun together. Playing with the children broke all barriers and became a universal language. While playing with the children, a little boy came up to Xochitl and I and asked if we knew how to play the piano. He told us that he had a surprise for us and brought us to the church at NPH where he played the Star Spangled Banner. He played beautifully and was so excited to share with us that he ran to his house afterwards to get his music book. We then sang “America, The Beautiful” together and enjoyed lunch with him in his home. I will never forget his enthusiasm and passion for the United States as well as the interactions I had with him and the other children. –Erica Luster

I thought that our time in the DR gave us a thorough overview of the way baseball fits into Dominican life. We experienced first hand everything from MLB academies to informal trainers on rugged fields working with kids they hope will eventually sign with big league team. What really made all the experiences described throughout this post great was how engaged everyone in the cohort was during our visits and afterward during both formal and informal discussions. Those discussions and the time spent together going through such an incredible experience definitely made our class much closer. –Alex Dawson

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One Reply to “República Dominicana Continuó”

  1. Det er ikke selve alarmen som irriterer meg, den kan installeres
    uten å bli koblet opp mot parasittene, men at disse snylte-firmaene som har sugerør inn på bankkontoen til folk uten ansvar
    for noe som helst, det irriterer meg..eller gjorde.

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