Archive | May, 2009

Goodbye college; hello world!

25 May

As promised – I have set up my blog by which all of you can follow my experiences (fulfilling and frustrating) throughout my time leading up to and during my Peace Corps service in Ukraine!  I can’t promise frequent updates, but hopefully I’ll be able to share some pictures and anecdotes that will make the page work bookmarking.

Here are the basics of my assignment:

  • Location: Ukraine (training to be done in Kiev)
  • Position: Secondary Education TEFL/TESL Volunteer
  • Job Description: Along with teaching English to my classes, I may have the opportunity to teach some American History and American Literature, as well as working with younger age groups.  During summers I will be coordinating and working summer camps emphasizing healthy living and teaching HIV/AIDS awareness.
  • Orientation Dates: September 27 – 29 (?) 2009
  • Training Dates: September 30 – December 7, 2009
  • Service Dates: December 8, 2009 – December 8, 2011

I missed blogging all of my agonizing over my aspiration statement because it was due at the end of the week before finals, which is always the busiest week of the entire semester.  Deadlines were top priority, sleeping was last.  Adding blogging in the mix would have been a colossal disaster.  My aspiration statement was three pages single spaced, so the people I’ll be working with in Ukraine have plenty of reading material.  The very day it was due, I was torn over expanding on my answers and sending it at the dead of night, or just letting go and accepting that I had already done enough.  If there hadn’t have been my senior thesis hanging in the balance, I’m afraid they might have received an entire novel on my aspirations for these impending two years of my life.  Does my over-zealousness surprise anyone at this point, though?

In preparation for training, this summer I am taking a TEFL/TESL course three weekends in a row as well as attempting to teach myself as much Ukrainian as humanly possible.  The course was going to be offered in Champaign, making it easy and convenient despite the grueling 9 am – 6 pm hours on both Saturday and Sunday three weeks in a row.  Sadly, there was insufficient enrollment here in Illinois.  Now, I have to drive to Indianapolis each weekend for the class – thank goodness friends from school are from the Indy area, otherwise those would be three lonely weekends!  In terms of the Ukrainian – well, I have a couple words and phrases under my belt thus far and an entire summer ahead of me!