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February 2014 YES Abroad Student of the Month
Mallory McEwen has been selected as the first YES Abroad Student of the Month, February 2014. She has embraced the goals of the program and committed herself to becoming a member of both the local and global community.
Mallory expected that Indonesia would bring a whirlwind of fresh global perspectives and experiences. She did not realize how many people would reach out and provide her with opportunities, and is grateful that Indonesians have so enthusiastically welcomed her. She enjoyed volunteering with various organizations in her U.S. hometown (Bozeman, MT) and now has a long list of volunteer experiences in Indonesia that includes teaching children on the street, doing science experiments with children at an orphanage and washing a water-buffalo in a river!
Every Monday, Mallory participates on the Radio Republik Indonesia (RRI) broadcast, an English radio program where she shares American insight. Topics range from presidents to superheroes. “It’s always fun!” Mallory reports. She has also participated in a radio show called K-Lite where she discusses a variety of health topics, such as food safety in the U.S., or her experiences with healthcare in Indonesia. Radio has been a great outlet for Mallory to give information about herself as an American and the United States.
Mallory has also been working with Ahmad Fuadi, an Indonesian bestselling author and former Fulbright Scholar. Together with him, she has spoken to nearly 400 people at motivational trainings about the power of perseverance, the importance of learning languages, and ways to see the world. Fuadi’s organization, Komunitas Menara, strives to provide free schools and tuition to underprivileged children in Indonesia. Mallory’s YES Abroad capstone project will be a fundraising campaign for this organization, and she has already created a partnership with three different schools from her hometown to do a “Pennies for Peers” campaign. Soon, she plans to visit one of the Komunitas Menara schools and its students.
Mallory emceed for the Youth Speak Fun Day (YSFD), an all-day event which promotes English speaking through spelling competitions, debate, English performances, speeches, and other activities. Over 5,000 people attended and over the course of the day Mallory spoke about the United States and the YES programs, and even had the opportunity to speak with the mayor of Bandung! While her list of accomplishments is long, Mallory values the simplest ones the most; chatting with the vegetable seller about his family or hearing her class at school sing and play guitar. Mallory is a model YES Abroad participant!