Spending time in nature to experience nonhuman animals
in their natural habitats is one of the most rewarding
and life-changing experiences you can have. While in
Africa, looking at other beings -- such as chimpanzees
and elephants -- in the eyes fueled my passion for
animal protection and conservation, as it only confirmed
what I already believed about the individual behind each
pair of eyes. The experience brought to life what I have
learned in the past about these animals, and provided
information and a different perspective that is
difficult to gain in just a classroom setting.
Now, more than ever, I believe that it is crucial to
think critically about our relationship with other
animals, and how our views and choices affect the other
species with whom we share this planet.