Friday, September 6, 2013


I just got done with MSC, or mid service conference.  Only 11 months to go!

It was great seeing friends and going to restaurants that serve food I forgot existed. (The French place has pumpkin pie!)  And some of the sessions were enjoyable.

The Education sector is still pretty new here in Ethiopia, just two years, and so there was a lot of discussion about changing our framework and adjusting programs to fit with what the MoE already has in place.  I find such things fascinating, analyzing strengths and weaknesses of a program and working with a group to improve it.  Maybe it's because our ITELE program is important and the changes to it now will effect the future of edu volunteers in Ethiopia, of I can see the long term impact of the framework and not a similar view of my work at the school, or perhaps I just like being a part of something important.  Regardless, it's making me glad I'm getting a MBA.  I imagine similar round table discussions in my future career and am looking forward to them.

I did sign up for two huge projects in addition to my clubs and trainings at school.  One is to help with creating a teacher training manual, specifically creating lesson plans for future PCVs to use in conducting methodology trainings for their teachers.

The other is a personal writing one, well, editing. I want to put together a collection of stories from the current Ethiopian generation of PCVs and RPCVS, and publish it with all proceeds going to the country fund to help pay for PCPP grants volunteers have written for grants that aren't covered by VAST or PEPFAR aka HIV or Malaria projects.

But again, they are lasting things that make be feel like I'm actually doing something.

It's weird, because I've been here for a year already and know I've made a difference - I have the English grades of my club students to prove it - but I have nothing concrete. I guess it comes back to the whole 'leaving your mark' thing a lot of people have.  Having a say in the program and in the perception of how people see Peace Corps and Ethiopia as a country just makes me feel valuable. And who doesn't like that?

Regardless, the new school year is starting soon, next week in fact, and I'm quite excited to get things up and running.  I feel like I've learned a lot and nothing at all this past year, so we'll see how 2006 (remember, Ethiopia has a different calender) goes.


Anonymous said...

11 short months to go. Yes, time to assess what your legacy will be in Ethiopia. The usual choices: A)be passive and in a few years you will be mostly forgotten, B) be active and work hard to make a difference which will be remembered long after you leave. Your choice.

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