The class of 2012 is ready to make waves all the way into the far East. Several of this year's graduates plan to spend much of the next year abroad, teaching, volunteering, and continuing their own education.

Post Graduation Plans Take Many Students Abroad

Wed Jun 20, 2012

Christina Borgatti, a history major, received a Gaeltacht Summer Award from the Ireland-United States Commission for Educational Exchange. This award is funded by the Irish Government's Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht and National Lottery, and will enable Christina to study the Irish language between July and August this year at the National University of Ireland in Galway.

Pádraic Déiseach became a member of the Elms College community during his time as a Fulbright Language Teaching Assistant, teaching Irish language to Elms students. The European Commission, the executive body of the European Union, has invited him to work in their Irish language unit in Brussels, Belgium. He will be translating and editing legislation and other important documents.

Sarah Donovan, a Spanish and psychology major, has been accepted to teach through the Council on International Educational Exchange (CIEE) Teach Abroad program in Spain. She is a past recipient of the Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship, which allowed her to complete a study abroad semester in Spain. She will teach English to students in the Andalusia region of Spain during the 2012-2013 academic year. While volunteering at Gray House in Springfield, Ma., Donovan taught English to African refugees, migrant farm workers from Guatemala and Mexico, and a group of individuals from various Central and South American countries. 

Christopher Lyons, a graduate student in the education program who also holds a bachelor's degree from Elms, has been accepted into the Japan Exchange and Teaching Program. He will teach English to students in Japan during the 2012-2013 academic year. Lyons currently is a student teacher at Westfield High School in Westfield, Ma. He also tutored his peers in the Elms College Academic Resource Center in English as a second language, writing and accounting. He traveled to Japan during the summer of 2011 through Elms College's partnership with University of Kochi, where he served as a graduate assistant and spent three months immersing himself in Japanese culture.

Adim Malek returned last summer to see his family in the newly independent South Sudan, for the first time in years. He is currently working on creating the GUARD foundation, or Greater United Aweil Reconstruction and Development, hoping to partner with organizations such as the United Nations or USAID to address issues such as access to clean water and infant mortality.

Before beginning her career as an elementary school teacher, Lindsay Papsin will learn the education system, church life, and culture of Jamaica as she spends a year volunteering for Passionist Volunteers International. Lindsay has traveled to Jamaica twice before, and was selected by PVI from among many willing applicants to this year-long program.

David Peters, an English major and religious studies and Asian studies minor, has been awarded a Fulbright U.S. Student Program scholarship to Taiwan in Teaching English as a Foreign Language during the 2012-2013 academic year. He is the first Elms student to apply for and receive the grant. Peters began teaching the Great Highland Bagpipe to others at the age of 14. During his time at Elms, he gained experience through tutoring at the Homework House in Holyoke, Ma., and as an assistant confirmation teacher at St. Stanislaus Catholic Church in Chicopee, Ma. Peters studied in China for a year through an independently designed program in cooperation with Elms College.

Charline Pysher, a senior nursing major, will travel to Ghana with Volta Aid Foundation after completing U.S. requirements to become a registered nurse. She will be in Ghana from August through December 2012 and will work in hospitals and clinics. Pysher traveled to Argentina in high school with World Challenge; to India on a medical mission trip with International Children's Heart Foundation; and completed several service trips with Elms College's campus ministry program to West Virginia, Honduras and Jamaica.