Hello friends and family, thanks for joining me! Here is my second interview in honor of women’s history month! Sojourner White is an international social worker and a travel educator. One interesting fact about Sojourner is that she is a former Fulbright Fellow.
Can you tell us a little about yourself and what inspires you to travel?
Hey y’all! My name is Sojourner and I am an international social worker by profession and travel educator by passion. I’m originally from Milwaukee, WI but I have lived in Spain, and Germany studying, interning, and working abroad. I say I’m a travel educator because I love learning and think traveling teaches us so much about ourselves, so I blog, write, and vlog about it all. I’m also passionate about responsible travel from the inside out, so I host a travel education series called “Let’s Unpack That” that discusses how power, privilege, and social identities impact our travel experiences too. I’m inspired by my ancestors such as my namesake Sojourner Truth who reclaimed her life and freedom post-slavery to live it on her terms and find her purpose as a abolitionist and women’s rights activist. I know I stand on her shoulders and owe it to myself to craft my own adventure and live into my purpose too.
How has travel impacted your life and how has it changed you?
Travel changed my entire career path. The minute I studied abroad in Granada, Spain I instantly fell in love with the idea of living and working abroad. It prompted me to change my idea of going straight to grad school after undergrad and instead I applied for a Fulbright Fellowship and won! So I went to teach English in Spain and the rest is history. I made travel part of my career path in grad school to become an International Social Worker and beyond for leisure, etc. I haven’t stopped since studying abroad in 2015.
Where was your most recent travel experience and what did it teach you?
My most recent travel experience was hiking at Devil’s Lake State Park in Wisconsin. I was born and raised in Milwaukee, WI and I rarely explored outside the city into other parts of the state. But with COVID I started exploring closer to home. I definitely think it taught me how to travel where I am and appreciate it more. It also helped me realize how much I enjoy the outdoors. I’m obsessed now.
What has been your most favorite travel experience and why?
So I was in Costa Rica when COVID hit, but that trip is so memorable to me. I hiked Rio Celeste and went ziplining through the rainforest. It was so unreal and beautiful. Plus it was a girl’s trip with two friends, which is always fun. And the food was so delicious and our Airbnb had an incredible view of the volcano in La Fortuna. Again, UNREAL. I loved it.
Do you have any tips or advice for people who want to travel more?
Just go for it! Save the money. Take the PTO or utilize your school breaks. Plan it yourself if you have to – just do it. Don’t ask for permission because you don’t need it.
What are the must have items in your packing list?
Ooooh so many things. Lipstick, headwraps, a portable charger, extra clothes in my carry-on just in case my bag is lost, and my cameras are at the top. Comfy shoes, clothes that can be worn multiple ways, and a reusable water bottle are also favorites. Oh and of course a backpack!
Where can people follow your travel journeys?
I’m everywhere on social media. You can find me on my website www.sojournies.com and Instagram @thesojournies. Facebook, Twitter, YouTube & Tik Tok @sojournies.
Why do you think is it important for black women to travel?
I think travel is liberating in a lot of ways for Black women. We are always tasked to handle and hold other people’s burdens and we tend to forget about ourselves. Travel is something we can claim for us to just be, learn, explore, etc. Now it doesn’t always mean a trip is perfect. But traveling as a Black woman really opened my eyes to all of the other amazing Black women around the world and all the magic we bring to the world, no matter where we are. It’s nice to just exist every once in a while.