This semester I have been studying abroad in Hong Kong. 
If you have talked to me at all this past semester, you know I am obsessed with this place, and truly believe it is the best city in the world. I have also been to neat places such as Macau, Malaysia, and Thailand. The latter being the greatest vacation I have ever been on. I am talking Pad Thai every day, floating bungalows, gorgeous scenic views, and ELEPHANTS!! 

 Yeah, I guess you could say I am having the time of my life…but something still bugs me. 

Every now and then I comment to my friends back home about how I am sad I missed Quals this year, or celebrating my 21st at Roy’s like any IU student should. However, they respond with the same message every time, “Dude, shut up, you’re in Hong Kong.” They’re right, because I love it. 

Unfortunately, nothing can quite compare to my love for IUDM though. 

Like you don’t understand, I do not get homesick. I mean, I love you Mom and Dad, but I have not been homesick once while at IU. 

The first case of being homesick occurred while in Hong Kong. It was February, and the IUDM committees had just been announced, and I was super excited to stalk all of my new PR committee members aka OPRABA family members. 

Then came the GroupMe. Once I was added to the GroupMe, it really hit me. All of these people have met each other, are creating bonds, are doing amazing things for the marathon while I am stuck halfway across the world. The funny thing is, the GroupMe is actually the one thing that has made me feel connected to my OPRABA family as much as ever. 

True, I do not even know all the lovely new folks, but I love hearing about their amazing experiences that I experienced when I first joined the committee. Hearing about cabins, tacky prom, the Ryan and Ashley Walk, and more has made me nostalgic as ever.

That’s just it, nostalgia. 

That is the one little piece of motivation within me that has made me hold on to my beloved committee and IUDM as a whole. I envy the feeling of fun committee meetings, socials, helping others, and more than anything, raising money for the kids. I would do anything to be home right now with my little red bucket canning for the kids at the Brownsburg Kroger during Road Rules (been there twice, always get $500+). 

Due to this everlasting feeling, it has inspired me, along with many of my friends abroad to do something about it. I have challenged my friends back home to tell me something to do here in this wild country for a few bucks toward the kids. But honestly, the best way I have remained close to the organization is by simply wearing the apparel. Everywhere I go I get questions from people all around the world about what my shirt means, what RW/ALC/FTK mean. I light up every time someone asks, and they always sense my passion. IUDM has literally gone international. I have a few more tricks up my sleeve to spread the word about our amazing organization, and the kids we benefit. This is my way of “bringing legacy to life” while abroad.

How are you doing it, wherever you are?

I’m Jason DuBro, and I’m FTK!