Just the beginning

Emily Gray


July 22, 2013

During my sophomore year of high school I made the decision that I wanted to travel before going to college. I wasn’t sure where or how I was going to make this happen, but I knew that this was something I really wanted, and I was going to do anything in my power to make it so. When junior year came around and all of my friends were trying to decide what colleges they wanted to apply to, I, on the other hand, was here trying to figure out what programs I could get into that would allow me the opportunity to travel.  I must have looked into at least 50 different programs but never found one that really suited my desires.

One day sitting in jazz band my friend Tonino came up to me and was talking about how he got into this program and how he would be traveling to Brazil. He started telling me all these awesome things that he would be doing and what the program was. Right then and there I knew that this was the program I had been searching for. 

During my senior year I felt that the time had come to stop talking about what I wanted to do and actually make it happen. I decided to apply to Global Citizen Year! When the time came to submit my application I was struck with so many emotions. This opportunity to travel was something I really wanted and I was unsure if it was going to happen. After I got an interview with Global Citizen Year, it dawned on me that this could actually happen.

On the day that I was going to find out if I had been accepted or not I must have checked my email a hundred times. It was about five o’clock and I was on the phone with my mom telling her I didn’t think I had been accepted and that I would just have to find another way to pursue traveling; the moment I hung up the phone Conor Farese called and said I had been accepted! I was in shock! So many emotions were going through my mind I wasn’t sure what to think.

Now that I have been accepted, there is so much to do before I leave. The idea of leaving has been exciting and scary, I have had moments where I have second-guessed my decision and haven’t been sure if traveling is something I’ll be able to manage. I’ve never left my family for more than two weeks or been out of the country before, which I’m nervous about.  After a couple days of thinking over it I knew that if I didn’t do this it would be one of the biggest regrets of my life. With that in mind I fully embrace all the challenges that this opportunity will present to me. I couldn’t be any more excited to start this new adventure!


Emily Gray