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Maya Foster

Maya is passionate about deep thinking, critical analysis, and, above all, moving through life with a deep sense of empathy and compassion. She is an avid reader, dancer, and photographer. On the off chance you've caught her out from behind the camera, she's likely either discussing psychology or energetically explaining the merits of existentialist philosophy. Her goals for the year are to develop a more complex sense of self, a broader cultural understanding of Ecuador and its residents, and use her social media to help dismantle the "savior complex" that accompanies engagement-based gap years. Her favorite quote: "The thing to do, it seems to me, is to prepare yourself so you can be a rainbow in somebody else's cloud." -Maya Angelou


Fundamentally Different, Fundamentally The Same

May 20, 2019

My mother has created the perfect response to an imperfect question; when asked if her daughter returned from her gap year more “__________” (insert mature, worldly, grounded, etc.) or simply just “different,” she avoids a direct answer. Instead, she opts for an anecdote. I will preface this with the fact that I have this information...

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On Control (or lack thereof)

March 17, 2019

Our brains are pattern recognition machines, fine tuned to process our surrounding stimuli and create predictions and respond appropriately. When we are given stimuli A and B, we are inclined to respond with action C, as opposed to any other letter. We are constantly intaking, analyzing, and synthesizing, all faster than a supercomputer and on...

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Portraits of Home

November 14, 2018

It occurs to me that sometimes conventional language isn’t sufficient. I find, increasingly each day, that words alone cannot describe the complexities of my life here in Cuenca. This realization actually has more to do with the absence of words than their presence.   Photography has always been my primary medium of choice. Portraiture, specifically,...

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"Poco a Poco"

October 3, 2018

Poco a poco, little by little, bit by bit. “Poco a poco” has been my favorite phrase recently. It is so simple in both English and Spanish, but I find that is the answer to most of the questions I’m asked right now: *How are you adjusting? How’s the language acquisition been? Do you feel...

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On Wandering

August 22, 2018

The experiences that teach us the most are often those found through wandering. This is true in the classroom; tangential lessons sparked by the genuine curiosity of the students are some of the most memorable of my educational career. This is true in art; the images I’ve created when inspired to explore new styles and...

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