A Schroon Lake teen has been named a People to People Student Ambassador. Desiree Lanoue, 16, has been seelcted for the program, which was founded by President Dwight D. Eisenhower in 1956.
A Schroon Lake teen has been named a People to People Student Ambassador.
Desiree Lanoue, 16, has been seelcted for the program, which was founded by President Dwight D. Eisenhower in 1956.
“During the summer of 2013, I will join a delegation of students my age on a 22-day educational program that includes Fiji, New Zealand and Australia,” Lanoue said. “President Dwight D. Eisenhower founded the People to People movement because he believed that ordinary citizens of different nations could solve their problems and live harmoniously with one another through shared experiences and understanding.”
While in on the trip Lanoue will have an opportunity to meet with government officials and other teens. She will stay with host families while taking part in a series of educational programs.
“Our curriculum will teach us about history, culture, architecture, art, conservation, geology, oceanography and political science in the areas we visit,” Lanoue said. “My dream has always been to become a marine biologist and during this trip we will be working alongside a team of marine biologists and we will be going to the Great Barrier Reef where studies are being done on the decline of coral.
“I am looking forward to the experience of working with the marine biologists and hoping that it will allow me to decide upon my future career,” she added. “We will be led by experienced teachers as we engage in a wide variety of cultural encounters and adventures; we will interact with a city council member at the Rotorua Council Chambers and learn about the local government, engage in a reforestation project in Fiji and encounter several rare species of birds on New Zealand’s sacred Mokoia Island.”
Lanoue said it will be the experience of a lifetime.
“After all, there is no better way to learn about different cultures and careers than to experience them firsthand,” she said. “Among these rare experiences we are also going to have fun while learning about local sports and experiencing Maori culture. Needless to say, this is a wonderful opportunity and I am extremely excited.”
The People to People program is not free. Lanoue will pay $9,000 to make the trek.
“I am paying my own way by working and doing fundraisers for this program, as well as asking for donations because it will be approximately $9,000 for me to go on this trip,” she said.
Lanoue will hold a spaghetti dinner Saturday, Dec. 1, at the Schroon Lake Fish & Game Club. It will include raffles and auctions.
“Along with these benefits, I will be collecting bottles for a bottle drive,” she said. “If you would like to make a donation of an item for a raffle, a small cash donation, have bottles that need to be picked up or if you’d like to purchase dinner or raffle tickets, or simply get more information on my adventure, give me a call at 532-9518. If you would like to donate something for the raffle on Dec. 1 please contact us so we can pick it up before Nov. 20.”
Lanoue is also willing to send postcards, do community service projects and other work in exchange for donations.
People can follow Lanoue’s exploits online at http://peerbackers.com/projects/desirees-journey-through-the-south-pacific
The trip will not be a vacation, according to People to People officials.
“Student Ambassadors are expected to create a positive impression of our country and culture, whether making a good impression in a school visit overseas, meeting local citizens, or attending a briefing with a government representative,” said Mary Eisenhower, president and CEO of People to People International, in a prepared statement. “This diplomatic spirit is one of the things that sets the People to People experience apart; our Student Ambassadors are global students and teachers of their own culture.”