Before stumbling across Global Citizen Year, my plans for the future were nebulous. After finishing a grueling college experience, I wasn’t sure if I wanted to head straight back to the classroom that had wrung me dry just in time for graduation. However, I wasn’t eager to try my hand at a year abroad without some sort of structure or meaning. When, by chance, I found Global Citizen Year, it was complete serendipity and I immediately began preparing for the most important application I had done my entire senior year.
I am participating in Global Citizen Year so I can learn how and where I want to make a difference, and eventually be able to put my four years at university to better use. GCY combines adventure with hard work to create the ultimate gap year experience. During my time abroad I will learn a new language, gain a new perspective, and receive training in invaluable skills that wouldn’t be the same in a college seminar. I’m most looking forward to becoming part of a new family when I arrive in my new country, as it will involve a two-way exchange where I will learn about their culture and daily routines, and I hopefully will be able to share in some of my family’s traditions. Gaining another family in a year abroad is the most important of the many exciting and important experiences that I will have, and I hope my new family will feel the same way.
Global Citizen Year is an organization that does more than just place high school graduates in internships overseas; it is an organization that is preparing a generation of young adults for a shrinking world. Economies, populations, and problems are spreading across borders and will continue to do so without socially and globally conscious citizens. I am proud to be a Fellow for Global Citizen Year as well as my colleagues who are embarking on this adventure with me, as we have all taken the first step off the fast track to college and into a changing world.