International Travel

Evans Scholars are encouraged to travel abroad early in their Swarthmore education to broaden their perspectives, deepen their knowledge of other languages and cultures and contribute their skills and talents to others.

Ernesto Manzo '11 — Ecuador

photo of Ernesto Manzo '11Ernesto volunteered for the Village Education Project in Otavalo, Ecuador in summer 2008, partly to explore the culture but also to find out whether teaching math was truly his calling in life. "I have always believed that education is a solution to poverty, but I also wanted to see whether it was something I wanted to pursue as a career. It turns out it is." In summer 2009 Ernesto volunteered with Global Volunteering Solutions and taught math in Ghana. He spent his time there learning phrases of Twi, the local language, along with exploring local foods such as banku and fufu. Ernesto also participated in a local Ghanaian protest for children's educational rights.

Angela Meng '12 — Ghana

photo of Angela Meng '12In summer 2009 Angela volunteered with a human rights organization in Accra, Ghana through Projects Abroad. "I really loved how the experience pushed me out of my comfort zone and forced me to explore so many different aspects of the world. I never imagined myself in West Africa riding in crammed vans on bumpy roads for hours, eating fried plantains and fufu everyday, taking cold bucket showers, playing football with school kids, and so many more small, but meaningful parts of my life there. It was so incredible living there and it was a lot different from just touring any place for just a week or so. I actually adapted to the Ghanaian lifestyle and by the end of the trip, I knew Accra better than any city in the United States. I am really proud of the fact that I was able to adapt to the lifestyle in Ghana. At first, it was difficult to be away from the luxuries and comfort of home in the U.S., but once I fully embraced living in Ghana, it was an amazing experience and I loved every moment of it." more

Nyika Corbett '10 — Tanzania

Nyika traveled to Tanzania in summer 2007 and spent several weeks working in an orphanage in Dar es Salaam, where she spent time playing and studying with the kids and helping the women who ran the house in whatever ways she could as well as helping in several local schools. "I went in with the mindset that I wanted to meet people, see life, and learn about whatever came my way. The trip widened my perspective in ways that I had never imagined. Despite the poverty and the long roads that some of the kids had traveled in getting to the orphanage, there was so much love and warmth in the house. This all may sound a bit cliché, but the experience left me with a strong desire to continue sharing the love that was so readily given to me. Like most Swarthmore students, I want to be useful while I am here in this world. These travels reminded me that the first step towards usefulness is to be truly open to learning from and loving towards those around us. I hope to remember this wherever life takes me after my time at Swarthmore."