January 14th, 2017. I remember walking into the Austin Library last year, waiting for the 30 minutes that could possibly be my key to a life-changing experience: my NSLI-Y interview. Having arrived half an hour earlier, I was convinced that I would spend the time stressing out about what the interview would entail. In the … Continue reading From Applicant to Alumna: Volunteering at NSLI-Y Interviews
It’s the 21st of January. Again. Last year, on this day, millions of Americans across the nation took to the streets in what would be the largest protest in the history of the United States. Last year, on this day, it was Trump’s first day in office. I couldn't march on the 21st last year. … Continue reading “Displaced”: One Year Later
You develop an interest. You go abroad. You learn a language, and become steeped in another culture. You come back home. You connect with alumni. You exchange ideas. You give back to your community. Months after my experience in Jordan, I feel like my summer abroad has finally come a full circle. For the past … Continue reading Coming a Full Circle: Giving Back after my NSLI-Y Experience
As I stepped into the vicinity of the Riverbend Church, I took immediate note of my colorful surroundings. For the eye, the area was lined with rows of stalls displaying art, food, and cultural artifacts from all across the world. For the ear, the air was filled with tones and melodies of different languages. Kippahs, … Continue reading What Truly “Makes America Great”
Walking into the small room plastered with children's’ artwork and school assignments proudly on display, I realized that it was only months ago that I had last stood in the same spot. Just a few months. Yet so much had changed. I, the volunteer who once knew little more than the Arabic alphabet, could now … Continue reading Tutoring Refugee Kids with iACT!
It’s Friday night and I leave for Pre-Departure Orientation (PDO) on Monday. This past week has been incredibly busy. In addition to cramming last minute Arabic vocabulary, choosing host family gifts, and packing my luggage, I was lucky to spend this week doing one of my favorite things: volunteering with refugees. Every summer, Interfaith Action … Continue reading A Rewarding Last Week in Austin… T-3 Days until my NSLI-Y Adventure!
As I wrote earlier, I have been volunteering as a Youth ESL Tutor for refugee children with iACT, the Interfaith Action of Central Texas on Saturdays. Today, I was volunteering in their other location for the first time, and I expected the general routine: come in, help out the kids, take them outside for some … Continue reading A Happy Coincidence
Last Saturday was my first day of volunteering as a Youth ESL Tutor with iACT, or the Interfaith Action of Central Texas, an organization that helps refugees in Austin. I had a wonderful time, and I want to dedicate this post to my experience. I must admit, as the only high schooler in the group … Continue reading Volunteering with Refugees
I was overwhelmed by the wonderful response for my production, “Displaced”. It was truly gratifying to see how the Austin community came together to support this cause. We were able to raise about $6000, which will all go towards supporting refugee girls in our city! According to a GirlForward representative, this was one of their … Continue reading “Displaced”: Response
After nearly a month, the videos for “Displaced” are finally available! The production consists of the stories of five different child refugees from across the world. Each story includes a narration, followed by a dance piece, and concluded by a video clip. As you can see, the recording of the entire production is listed here, … Continue reading “Displaced” Videos