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Impact Presentation: Nova’s Experience in Cambodia

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Impact Presentation: Nova’s Experience in Cambodia

Clare Shanahan, Editor in Chief

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Three years ago, Nova Chen took a trip to Cambodia for pleasure; inspired by what she saw there, she returned for the following two summers to work with an organization called WOW education. With WOW, Nova had incredible service experiences working with Cambodian students and helping to build a school.

Her first summer, Nova had no idea what she was getting herself into, saying she was most shocked by “how the living condition is different compared to [her] life in America or China.” Nova was also shocked by the differences in the Cambodian schooling system. She shared with me that “in the middle school and elementary school they only [teach] Cambodian and math.” This shocked her immensely when she first learned about it as it is obviously so different from the schooling she is used to.

Nova had tons of incredible experiences in Cambodia in the past two years and saw herself grow as a person. One of her favorite memories from her service came from meeting one “little boy” in her first year. She said that she “saw him growing up and then every year [she] went back he [was] different. He’s taller and stronger and he can speak some Mandarin with [her].” Nova noted this as one of the most rewarding and favorite memories from her time in Cambodia, calling his growth “really impressive.”

Nova is excited to return to Cambodia this year, and she will be taking on a new role within the WOW education organization. She will spend the whole summer working as an intern and is actually beginning her work now! Nova is excited to fulfill lots of new roles, including organizing amenities for volunteers and working with different non governmental organizations to aid and add to the program. She has already begun the research process to find these organizations and is really looking forward to the upcoming summer.

Another facet of Nova’s role as an intern is to work towards recruiting new volunteers for the program. She is currently working on recruiting Massachusetts international students. Unfortunately, according to Nova, the program is only available for Chinese citizens. However, if you are an international student and interested in this program, get in touch with Nova to hear more!

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