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January American Abroad Student of the Month
Lizzie S., (YES Abroad 2019-2020, Senegal), a current YES Abroad participant from Easton, Pennsylvania, is the U.S. Department of State’s January 2020 American Abroad Student of the Month. Lizzie graduated from Moravian Academy in Bethlehem, PA and is currently studying in Dakar, Senegal.
Lizzie has been excited to learn about Senegalese culture and has participated enthusiastically in community events and activities with her host families. She has also shown a lot of interest in learning Wolof (a local language) and has been an active student at school where the curriculum is taught entirely in French.
Lizzie has made multiple presentations about the U.S. at her host school, as well as a presentation in French to a French class at her U.S. high school during International Education Week. Lizzie also wrote for the Yes Abroad website, summarizing and publishing eight weeks of her diary, which included many challenging incidents and the rewards of keeping an open mind.
In addition, she volunteers every week at the local SOS Enfants Village orphanage, as well as with three other local organizations focusing on youth education- La Pouponierre, Hearts Home, and Sunu Thiossane. At Sunu Thiossane, Lizzie is working to create a National Senegalese Talent Show to help young people showcase their creative and artistic skills, while also talking about environmental issues.
Lizzie has embraced her time in Senegal with a positive outlook and has focused on turning her experiences into learning opportunities. This has allowed her to adapt quickly and to build meaningful connections in her community.