When Don De Graaf ’82 talks about off-campus travel, his eyes light up, and his enthusiasm is contagious. So it’s no surprise that the Calvin College professor of kinesiology and director of off-campus programs has written a book on the subject, There and Back: Living and Learning Abroad (Calvin College Press, 2015).
De Graaf wrote the book for two reasons: First, he noticed there were a lot of how-to books on the market that addressed studying abroad, but there weren’t any that tackled the topic from a faith perspective. Second, he said he wanted to tell some of the stories of students who engage in off-campus programs at Calvin.
“There was such rich learning that was taking place, and I wanted to capture some of those voices as they talked about their study-abroad experience through the eyes of their faith,” he said.
The book is divided into three sections: “Before You Leave,” “The Experience” and “Returning Home.” Each section is filled with student reflections and excerpts from Calvin students who have traveled to places from China to Ghana to Peru and dozens of places in between.