Meet Cultural Exchange Participant Carolina Faria Ferreira from Brazil

Upon completing her education in agronomy, Carolina Faria Ferreira was inspired to go abroad to fulfill her dreams of traveling the world all while improving her professional skills and English language proficiency.  Read on to learn more about Faria’s CAEP experience:

“I am training at Bartlett Farm in Salisbury, Massachusetts. The happiest moment during my CAEP experience was my first day at the farm because my dream had finally come true!

My host is Donna Bartlett, and she is an incredible person. Besides doing all the hard work with us in the field, she always takes us to visit new places in the region and taught us about American history, food, and customs. She treats us like family, so I feel at home even though I’m very far from my family in Brazil. She took us to visit many cities in the New England region, local wildlife parks, museums, and farms in the area.

My host taught me different field techniques that we don’t learn in college. She also showed me that a farm can operate with so many different cultures! Some of my daily duties at the farm included preparing the seed beds to sow all the vegetables earlier in the season. Later in the season, I helped harvest all of the vegetables, wash and package everything for the market and the farm stand. Also, I worked at the farm stand serving customers a couple of days a week. The good part of working on a vegetable farm with so many varieties of vegetables is that every day is different, and you always learn something new!

Some of my favorite experiences in the United States included having the opportunity to participate in several American events like the Fourth of July, Halloween and county fairs. Living on the coast was also a great experience because during the summer I had the opportunity to go to the beach on my days off, relax, and enjoy the beautiful coastline of New England.

During my CAEP experience, I had the opportunity to go to some cities in the New England region like Portland, Portsmouth, and Boston which is the most beautiful city I have ever visited. I also had the opportunity to see big universities like Harvard and MIT. I really enjoyed all the people I have had the chance to meet. Americans are always very cordial, and it was interesting to see how Americans are patriots. My favorite part of the United States was the fall season in New England. The colorful trees, pumpkins, and mum decorations were beautiful!

During my program, I learned about the meaning and customs of commemorative dates in the United States. I learned that typical foods from the United States go beyond hamburgers and pizza, and also how Americans value the history of the country with all of the museums and memorials.

If I could tell someone who was considering the CAEP program, I would say to them not to hesitate because I’m sure that wherever you go, it will be a very good experience. It is an opportunity to grow professionally and as a person. Surely you will meet people and make friends for the rest of your life!

I think one of the great benefits of participating in a CAEP exchange program is to be able to increase my curriculum related to my profession as an agronomist all while having an international experience. I would certainly recommend CAEP because having the opportunity to live day to day on a farm and live with an American family was a unique experience that helped me grow professionally and as a person. It was a life changing experience!”