October 2018 – Third year scholars, Christina Johnson and Sydney Williams, received Intermediate Honors. This award is given to students in the College that are in the top 20% of their class and have earned at least 60 credits at UVA. Sydney sent me the attached pic from the ceremony today. Congrats ladies!!!Click here to congratulate Sydney and Click here to congratulate Christina
Sydney Williams, 2018 J-Term in St. Kitts and Nevis
Specifically, I studied public health in both St. Kitts and Nevis with a primary focus on the prevention of HPV. We collaborated with local Non-Governmental Organizations, healthcare professionals, and teachers to design a protocol for the implementation of the HPV vaccine in middle schools. The St. Kitts and Nevis health care system is primarily community based, with an emphasis on public education and prevention. Students are typically vaccinated, during the school day, depending on their grade level. Our goal was to develop a strategy for introducing HPV vaccination into the regularly scheduled administration of vaccines, for students in the sixth grade. This process included touring the Joseph N France General Hospital in St. Kitts, visiting community health clinics, and observing lectures at the hospital. Our experiences allowed us to gain an understanding of the health care system, interact with the people of St. Kitts, and acquire knowledge essential for our work on HPV vaccination. See full document with photos on Sydney’s experience here.
Salem Zelalem, The London: Culture Past and Present program
At first, I was hesitant about studying abroad to London. Three weeks seemed like an exorbitant amount of time to spend travelling with a group of strangers; I applied for the trip convinced it would be “good for me”, but had no idea how fundamentally life-changing the experience would become. The London: Culture Past and Present program, spearheaded by Professors Michael Levinson and Claire Kinney, was one of the most rewarding times I have yet to have as a student at this University.
It was immediately evident how important the city of London was to those running the program. From scaling St. Paul’s Cathedral, to punting across a river in Cambridge, to just visiting a local Pizza Hut, every moment was met with a real and genuine joyful optimism. This energy was infectious, and buoyed the group forward. Although we spent time in the classroom, the format was heavily discussion-based. Levenson and Kinney made it clear that they valued our input, and in such a small group they dispensed valuable insights often on a one-on-one basis. It was immensely valuable to have discussions with Professors over a meal, or while gripping the same pole on the Tube. Read more about Salem’s experience and photos here.
Triston Smith, Visits Brazil
I have the amazing honor of being chosen for the Ridley spotlight because of work that I have recently been able to participate in that is the effect of a range of opportunities granted to me. The most major of these is definitely being a Ridley Scholar; because of this blessing, I was able to attend my first choice school: The University of Virginia.
Coming into college, I believed that I would go on to major in Comparative Literature and/or Anthropology—far from the Cognitive/Neuroscience and Women, Gender, and Sexuality majors that I have chosen to pursue—and therefore wanted to begin studying abroad as early as I possibly could. In the past, I have done work with YUGO Ministries in Ensenada, Mexico, but these opportunities each lasted for just under a week—a timeframe that just didn’t feel like I got to connect with the families we were working and staying with on the level I hoped for. Then I was, amazingly, chosen to participate in a J-term course for the 2015-2016 school year in Salvador, Bahia, Brazil! I knew that J-terms usually only last around two weeks, so I contacted the person that was organizing the living arrangements and begged them to help me find a place to stay for a longer time so I could truly tune into Brazilian culture. I ended up staying there for a total of four weeks and falling in love with the people, both the ones I was staying with and the general population of the region of Brazil in which I resided. However, the course did not have any kind of outreach attached to it, so I was still left unfulfilled. Continue reading Trisiton’s reflections here.