Pedro Sibiea takes study abroad trip to Panama

Louisville football star Pedro Sibiea fulfills his dream to study abroad. He did it so in Panama; he filled all the forms and got the permission from the football staff. When asked he said “I wanted to try new things and learn something new, and make the most of my opportunity.”

During his trip to Panama Pedro immerse in the culture of Panama without knowing much Spanish; he took classes on Panamanian culture and intercultural communication making friends right away and he visited the indigenous Embera tribe.

Trip leader and chair of Louisville department of communication said “A lot of times maybe athletes are shy and afraid to do it, but Pedro had a good time. He got a great deal out of it. A trip like this opens their eyes to so many things. He was surprised by how much of an effect it had on him.”

During his time with the Embera tribe he witnesses their lifestyle, everything handmade, the use of medicinal plants and even their clothes. All they possess is made by them, the colors are obtained by mixing several vegetation. One of the highlights of Sibiea was when he had the opportunity to play with the tribe children “We used a lot of hand gestures, trying to make up a picture for them so they could see what I was talking about,” Sibiea said. “Everything went smooth, though.”

He also had the opportunity to visit a local orphanage, each student was paired with a child for a day “It was one of those bonding moments,” Sibiea said. “I didn’t speak the language, but they had a soccer ball and he knew what it was so OK, I knew we were about to play. That’s how most of the day went.”

When he arrived back to his home Sibiea said “I feel like it’s something that should be accessible and pushed more toward athletes. Most don’t even make it out to their own city. To get out of the country, that’s even bigger. I like that type of thing. I feel like if I was able to do it, more people should have opportunities to do it as well to take advantage of it.”