The Light - An Alumni Publication Winter 2014/2015 - Page 2

Letter from the President THE JOURNEY OF A LIFETIME Dear YFU Alumni: Since launching the inaugural edition of The Light last autumn, we have been astounded by the positive feedback we’ve received. It really shouldn’t be surprising, however, given that this publication is a compilation of the wonderful stories, experiences and reflections you share with us. In this edition, we’re excited for you to read about: • an alumna who overcame family objections to studying abroad and helped to disband the myth that “people in Africa ride lions to school”; • an alumnus, volunteer, and Chair of the External Affairs Committee on the YFU Board of Trustees, who will summit Mt. Everest this summer as a fundraiser for YFU; • excerpts from an alumna’s book on the experiences of living and working in Rwanda, which won the Peace Corps’ Paul Cowan Non-Fiction Award. Whether your time abroad stimulated an interest in international affairs, influenced your career choices, led to new bonds of friendship or gave you a new global perspective, your YFU experience is one that lives on. As our alumni network continues to grow, I encourage you to get involved, and know that your YFU family is here to share in your triumphs and to support you in your journey as a global citizen. In particular, I hope you’ll consider personally joining me on our new adult study tour to Cuba. See the story on page 6 for details. Also, join us in DC over Columbus Day weekend for our first National Alumni Reunion. On behalf of all of us at YFU, I hope the holidays brought you much joy and that in this new year, you will continue to share the value of intercultural exchanges in your day-to-day lives. NATIONAL ALUMNI REUNION SAVE THE DATE Please mark your calendars to visit Washington, DC over Columbus Day weekend, October 10 and 11, 2015 for our first annual YFU USA Alumni Reunion! Happy New Year, Michael E. Hill President & Chief Executive Officer ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS The Light is published by the Office of External Affairs at YFU USA for alumni and friends of YFU USA. Editor: John Favazzo Assistant Editor: Jennifer Heusted-McKendree Design Team: Melissa Logan and Cara Bahniuk Advisors: Charles Cadigan Erin Helland (Germany, 1997) Alicia Kubert-Smith Contributors: Sarah Coomber (Japan, 1986) Wendy Cossman (Netherlands, 1971) Alexandra Fleming (host parent)