Since October 2012, Work and Travel Program manager Anna Poplasky has been working hard to help students find jobs and housing for the summer in the US. The thriving program has worked to give students the opportunity to practice their English and broaden their work experience in the U.S. Through the program she says this year they plan to organize cultural activities for J-1 students, send care packages to Work and Travel participants throughout the US and constantly stay in touch with them to make sure any help is needed.
Anna says that volunteers can be great inspirations for students involved in the program.
“The care packages could be a great way to motivate Work and Travel students and let them know they always have support from our volunteer,” Anna says. “Those care packages would also include little gifts and trinkets students could take home with them.”
Anna says she is happy to see students getting as much as possible out of the program.
“They get excellent cultural experience and share their experience with American citizens,” she says. “Facilitating such multicultural exchange and seeing how happy students are when they learn something knew is always rewarding.”
Since the Work and Travel program is often students’ first time being in the United States, the experience also tends to inspire them to travel the world and meet new people as well.
The program also has its challenges as well, in that unfortunately some students were unable to obtain visas to participate in the program. Also, another large problem faced is finding affordable, safe housing for students.
In dealing with challenges and continuing support for students involved with Work and Travel, Anna says the local community is extremely important.
“To get more people to participate, we should raise awareness that the program exists and it is a great opportunity to meet people from other parts of the world,” she says. “An excellent way to do so is to host a J-1 student and we will try to facilitate this process starting this summer.”
Anna says being a part of Arzuw Foundation has been very rewarding for her.
“I have traveled a lot and understand that it could be quite difficult to be a foreign student in a different country. Arzuw Foundation does a fantastic job in helping out the students and fostering young talents.”
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