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The
VISIONS
Blog

Program Updates and Notes from the Field

Dig deeper into stories of friendships, community and projects.

The
VISIONS
Blog

Program Updates and Notes from the Field

Youra Moeun | From Cambodia to MSU to PhD Program

Youra Moeun | From Cambodia to MSU to PhD Program

Youra Moeun was only nine years old when she moved from her home village in Cambodia to Phnom Penh, leaving behind her parents and four sisters. An American couple had offered to pay school fees for a handful of kids in the capital city, and Youra, a promising student, seized the opportunity.

VISIONS Spotlighted by the New York Times

VISIONS Spotlighted by the New York Times

VISIONS was spotlighted by the New York Times earlier this week in their article about summer programs that teach empathy! The print copy will appear in the newspaper on Sunday, July 8, 2018. Read the excerpt from the NYT below…

Spotlight: Madison Asher

Spotlight: Madison Asher

Twelve years since her experience in Peru, Madison fills us in on what her life looks like now. “My friends used to play the “find something Madison can’t turn positive” game. They almost always lost…”

Spotlight: Danielle Parga

Spotlight: Danielle Parga

Twelve years since her trip to Peru, Danielle fills us in on what her life looks like now. “I went on to study Latin American art history and archaeology in college, and I was able to pull from my VISIONS experience to fill in the gaps…”

Spotlight: Emma Solferino

Spotlight: Emma Solferino

Today we hear directly from British Virgin Islands participant Emma about her daily life and her takeaways from the Caribbean… “I strive to smile frequently and try to make people laugh through (not so great, admittedly) jokes, so day to day I’m pretty happy…”

Spotlight: Kristin O’Donoghue

Spotlight: Kristin O’Donoghue

Kristin shares her hopes for the future and explains how international community service fits in… “I would like to break down barriers of judgment that we have created for ourselves, that prohibit us from understanding one another and from making change…”

Spotlight: Marvin Mastin

Spotlight: Marvin Mastin

When Marvin enters the room, the world gets a little brighter… “In my life I would like to create dialogue between people/groups. Everything starts with an interaction between two parties. VISIONS taught me that I only skimmed the surface of what there is to learn, share and discover…”

Spotlight: Kodee Cloninger

Spotlight: Kodee Cloninger

Kodee will be returning to Ecuador for her sixth summer with VISIONS and is excited to share her passion with another group…
“Through its focus on community and communication VISIONS has given me the opportunity to accept myself for my greatest strengths and weaknesses…”

Grow Your Grit with VISIONS

Grow Your Grit with VISIONS

What trait offers the best chance at future happiness and success? Not a high IQ. Not even innate talent. According to the educational research, it’s “grit.” At VISIONS, we’re well acquainted with grit. Over the last 30 years, we’ve watched our participants build it right before our very eyes.

Spotlight: Amanda Pincock

Spotlight: Amanda Pincock

Global citizen and longtime VISIONS Director Amanda shares a little about her world… “Having the opportunity to be placed in a community and live there for a summer, and being accepted by and working with people who have sometimes spent their lives there, was a blessing I will never take for granted…”

Spotlight: Eliza Trainer

Spotlight: Eliza Trainer

Eliza will be heading to the Dominican Republic this summer for her second VISIONS program. Hear her reflections from Peru… “I want to continue to challenge myself and put myself in situations that will help me grow because it feels amazing to help others while having fun and learning at the same time…”

Spotlight: Molly Williams

Spotlight: Molly Williams

Molly tells about her experience in Peru.
“Something that makes me hopeful for the future is knowing how even though America and Peru were so different, we could still relate to the locals through shared passions and humor. It’s nice to be reminded that we all share the same humanity.”

Spotlight: Jarin Mandros

Spotlight: Jarin Mandros

Jarin will be heading to Ecuador this summer for her second VISIONS program… “I want to make people notice. We are all so focused on our own things and we never realize what is happening with the people around us…”

Spotlight: Andrew Goodrum

Spotlight: Andrew Goodrum

Andrew has traveled the world with VISIONS and will be back this summer as a leader.
“VISIONS taught me to be a lot more appreciative of everything I have in my life and to stop dwelling on the small things in life. Focus on the future because if you keep looking back you’re going to trip going forward…”

Spotlight: Claire Hortens

Spotlight: Claire Hortens

Claire is an inspiring global citizen, social justice seeker, and former VISIONS Director. Today we take a peek into her world… “VISIONS has been the backbone of my pursuit of social work and social justice for as long as I can remember…”