SIT Alumna Writes About the Homestay Experience

Alumna Anna Bongardino (Spring 2018) published this essay on the homestay experience in the PittNews. She is featured above with her homestay brother and sister.

I could hear the rhythmic chant of the afternoon adhan — the Islamic call to worship — ring out from the tinny rooftop speakers of nearby mosques from my second story bedroom in the city center of Rabat, Morocco. After the call to prayer subsided, a Moroccan woman who looked to be a few years younger than my mother walked through the door of my new bedroom and wrapped me in an affectionate embrace.

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Alumni Spotlight: Maddy Crowell

by Erika Riley

Maddy Crowell had never considered journalism before attending SIT’s program in Morocco in the Fall of 2013. Now she spends her days freelancing around the world, covering everything from France’s colonial legacy in Guadaloupe to white supremacists in the United States.

“It was all very transformative for me,” the 26 year-old alum said. “I came back to Carleton after the semester and switched [my major] from philosophy to politics and was very very restless and ready to get out of school.”

She originally applied to the SIT Morocco: Field Studies in New Media and Journalism program because she wanted to study outside the Western world and wanted to learn Arabic.

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Alumni Spotlight: Kayla Dwyer

by Erika Riley

For Kayla Dwyer, the decision to study abroad during her junior year was a given. She knew she wanted to go abroad, and decided on the SIT Morocco: Field Studies in New Media and Journalism program after one of her friends who had recently finished the program recommended it to her.

“It’s the best thing I’ve ever done. I applied, was accepted, and I would never go back on that,” Dwyer said. “I wouldn’t change my decision.”

Dwyer wanted a program that would allow her to improve her French skills, while also going outside her comfort zone.

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Alumni Spotlight : Simeon Lancaster

by Taylor Burris

Simeon Lancaster, 21, inspired by the president of Round Earth Media, Mary Stucky, knew that he wanted to journey to Morocco to broaden his cultural knowledge and build strong cross-cultural connections through his work in journalism. Although he has yet to return to the country, he is heading to Lithuania, Poland, and Belarus this January to study their governmental systems after the collapse of the USSR.

“Coverage is drastically decreasing and I don’t want that to happen. I saw so many people who had very important stories outside the U.S.

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Alumni Spotlight: Jacqueline Kantor

Jacqueline Kantor MOJ class of 2012.

by Julia Cabrera

Jacqueline Kantor knew she wanted to study abroad in an Arabic-speaking country after taking two years of the language in college. Once she found out about the Moroccan Journalism Program(MOJ), she said it was the obvious choice. Four years later, she returns to the African Kingdom frequently filing articles for publications such as The Washington Post, Pacific Standard and IRunfar.

“I am finding that traveling alone and freelancing are both incredibly difficult and exhilarating, but it’s worth the challenge. I love exploring a new country, and I love reporting, so I consider myself very lucky to do both on a daily basis,” she said.

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