community engagement

The Versatility of the LtN Experience: Rachel Ziemba

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With my return to school rapidly approaching, I can confidently look back and say, what an awesome summer! I luckily got to spend June and July working for LtN in the sweaty yet beautiful Bocas. Seeing LtN’s Panama presence turn just one year old, my fellow interns and I were all reminded of both the progress that had been made in such short time and the great potential to grow that still remained.

Taking this potential as inspiration for action, we all divvied up the many things we hoped to accomplish in order to leave LtN Panama a little better than we found it and got to work. I took the lead on analyzing and reorganizing LtN’s metrics and evaluation methods in place for Nicaragua programs. In addition, I developed a similar system for Bocas, something that had yet to materialize due to the growing nature of our programs there.

Working in a foreign country for a small non-profit with a relatively new presence in the area, this summer proved to be equally as challenging as valuable. I learned to navigate working with limited resources, mastering the art of improvisation and problem solving. Cultivating genuine trust with the local community by immersing myself wholeheartedly also required me to take a few worthwhile steps outside my comfort zone.

“For a Biology major with aspirations to become a physician one day, what struck me most about my time with LtN was how I will be able to transfer all that I learned to my academic discipline and intended career path."

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For a Biology major with aspirations to become a physician one day, what struck me most about my time with LtN was how I will be able to transfer all that I learned to my academic discipline and intended career path. While the actual work I do will change one day, it will do so in name only, as the principles that govern working to improve the lives of others using creative, modest methods and solutions will remain the same. Similarly, I know one day I’ll be able to point to my experience connecting with the players and parents of Bocas as a strong foundation for the ability to establish honest, natural relationships with patients and families.

While interning with LtN this summer, I learned to make the most of the available resources to maximize the benefit of my presence anywhere for whomever I may serve.  My biggest dream for the future is to be able to care for people in the greatest need, and I’m grateful to LtN for giving me the tools to accomplish my dreams. I sincerely hope that one day I may be able to use my newly-minted background in a small, international non-profit organization to work for a humanitarian cause and help make the world a better place. 

As a final sendoff I must say THANK YOU to LtN for an amazing and valuable summer. I will forever carry with me the countless lessons learned in Bocas.

Pingry's Luke and Olivia pass on the LtN Tradition

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Liv and I were the co-leaders of the Lacrosse the Nations Club at Pingry. We both recently graduated and were the captains of our respective lacrosse teams and have been involved with LtN since our freshman/ sophomore years at Pingry. We have greatly enjoyed leading the club over this past year. Our LtN activities occur locally during the fall and with fundraising in the spring.

This past fall, Liv and I designed and ran 2 half-day events with the Elizabethport Presbyterian Center. The first event involved 25 middle school children coming to Pingry for a lacrosse clinic designed and run by us with assistance from a bunch of our lacrosse teammates. The subsequent event was held at Eport’s Preschool where the Pingry LtN Club ran arts and crafts activities in four classrooms with 40-45 young kids.

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To support the international arm of the LtN organization, we ran two fundraisers: one in late Jan/Feb selling LtN t-shirts and the second in late Apr/May selling Pingry bleacher seat cushions. We raised just over $3000 to support Lacrosse the Nations.

We will miss the Pingry LtN club but have left it in good hands.

Luke

Pingry High School’s 2019 LtN Club Members.

Pingry High School’s 2019 LtN Club Members.