Ever since I was little, I wanted to travel the world. I was that geeky kid: I asked to go to museums and libraries instead of the carnival or toy store. I learned the history of the slave trade (I got half way through Roots at 12), everything humanly possible about ancient Egypt, and memorized the myths of the ancient Greeks. My parents would take me into a museum and I would sit there like a tour guide, informing them all about what we were looking at and how it contrasts into todays world.
When I was about eight, my sister studied abroad in Paris for a semester. I don’t really remember much about when she was gone, but I remember when she came back. I made her a box of fake American food: pizza, popcorn, diet coke. She brought me back a childrens French phrase book – something I still use to help me at my French today. My sissy was my hero, so whatever she did, I had to do too. That was the moment I knew I needed to travel the world.
At eight, traveling the world was a little impossible. The closest I was getting was Disney World and the Grand Canyon. So I would sit on the couch with my dad and watch travel show after travel show after travel show. Of course, we would take a break for Spongebob or Fairly Odd Parents, but it always went back to travel.
When I was 16, I went on my high school band trip to NYC (I was in color guard.) New York felt like a different part of the world. I had been to Chicago many times, but New York, New York was something else. So many different people and cultures all together in one place. I got to talk to people from China, Australia, Nigeria, India. I was that weirdo kid who walked up to strangers just to ask them where they were from.
While my career choice of journalism seems obvious to me now, back then I wanted to be an artist. I drew and drew and drew. But journalism is my true love. I love to write, I love to inform. But most of all, I love to be nosey. I talk to people in the elevator, in the store. If someone is speaking a different language within each shot, you better believe that I am asking them what language they are speaking and where they are from.
I think my love of people has helped me find my future niche. I want to be the person in the middle of the action, the protest, the war camps, the political events. It bothers me that so many people are either apathetic or have no idea what is going on outside our borders. To be frank, this sometimes includes me. I hate learning about something, only to find out that it has been going on for months. I want to change this type of American media culture, so that Americans can have a better understanding of the world we are living in.
I was recently accepted by Academic Studies Abroad to study abroad in London. I can’t even explain to you how excited I am. But studying abroad is super expensive. I honestly thought that it would cost about the same as tuition for a normal semester – $6,000. HA. NOPE! Try more like $14,000, and that is JUST for the tuition and housing. The flight, food, transportation, any thing else that requires money, is up to me. I am estimating that my total cost is going to be somewhere around $19,000. There is no way I can raise that money by myself. My parents were once in a position to help me financially with college, but unfortunately, this is no longer possible. Between the economy, bills, and my mom’s own student loans, I am on my own. But between going to school full time and working part time, it seems impossible.
Honestly, I need your help. I’ve set up a crowdfunding web page on Go Fund Me to help me raise money. What is pretty cool is that with each size donation, you get a free gift! From $5 to $5,000, every little bit helps. Thank you so much for your consideration. Without help, I won’t be able to live my life long dream.