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Showing posts from July, 2014

Onward to Naples!

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Hey Friends and Family!

What do you call people from Naples?..... Nipples..... :-)

In all seriousness, I spend way too much time in Naples. Now that all but one of my friends have left Miami to pursue shit elsewhere, I find myself visiting my fam in Naples more than I should (I am an independent, self-sufficient, young woman after all). I try not to go every weekend, but since my siblings are visiting for the next couple of weeks, I'm probably gonna be in Naples a lot. Like, right now for instance... as I write this... oh geez.

Normally, I visit all by my lonesome, but that doesn't make for a good blog post, so let's go back in time, shall we? Not last weekend, but the weekend before, I brought my friend, Julian, with me. He isn't the first friend I've brought to Naples (ooo how promiscuous of me); I went with Leigh, Jesse, Ryan and Sarah, the first weekend my parents moved in. Anyway, per usual, we left after work on Friday: Me, Julian, Carter (my baby), and of co…

And the countdown begins...

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Hey Friends and Family!

Today, July 20th, marks exactly 6 months until my departure! Eekk. Did you do the math?... That means January 20th, 2015 is the day! (math is hard)

Obviously, I am super excited to go to South Africa, but I can wait. Does that make sense? I'm not in a rush to fast forward through the next 6 months of my life because that time is going to pass regardless. And whether or not I enjoy my last 6 months in Miami and make the most of it, or spend my time yearning for the Peace Corps, January 20 is going to come at the exact same time. Plus, there is a lot I need to do in the next 6 months, which I will get to later. 
Aside from the Peace Corps significance, today is also important because two of my favorite people in the entire world turn one year wiser today. Happy Birthday to my dad, Ed, and my bestest, bestest friend, Ryan!
To my loving father on his 56th birthday: This is the first time in years I got to spend your birthday with you and I am so glad that I did. I h…

Addressing negative comments about my PC service

Hey Friends and Family!

Since I decided to join the Peace Corps, the majority of people I talk to only have positive things to say, but a small percentage feel the need to make negative comments towards my service. I am addressing those negative comments here.

Disclaimer: This is only directed to those people who make negative comments. For everyone else, I'm sorry if this comes across rude or rant-y, that is not my intent. If you take offense to anything I say, let me know and we can chat!

Peace Corps Volunteers don't actually make a difference.
I occasionally hear this from people and it really pisses me off. They say that PCV don't really do anything and they don't help anyone. I think this comes from a convoluted idea that PCV are on a mission to change the world. Of course, if someone's goal is to change the world, any change they do make is going to seem insignificant in comparison. Yes, in an ideal world, I want to help every single person on the planet (but i…

In the meantime...

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Hi Friends and Family!

Most of you know that I graduated from the University of Miami on December 19, 2013, and I am not leaving for the Peace Corps until January 20, 2015, which leaves almost exactly a year (okay, 13 months) between school and the PC. I consider this time period, purgatory. I want to be in South Africa and I want to be a Peace Corps volunteer more than anything in the whole world, but I am patiently waiting my turn. I am not quite where I want to be, but my previous college life is completely over: hence, purgatory.

So, people want to know, what am I doing during my "purgatory"?

Well, back in October 2013, when I had applied to the Peace Corps but hadn't yet heard back, I decided to apply for "backup" jobs, just in case something happened. Almost immediately after getting nominated for service in Guatemala, I found out that I had been accepted as a marketing coordinator at Equiflor Corp., a flower distribution company here in Miami, FL. I was …

Peace Corps Application Timeline

Hi Friends and Family! Here it is: exact dates for the Peace Corps application process...

August 2, 2013: Submitted my application online.

September, ? 2013: In-person interview (I cannot for the life of me remember the exact date).

November 20, 2013: Nominated for a program in a Spanish speaking country, which would leave in October 2014 (I later found out the country was Guatemala). At this point, I was asked to complete medical forms and a legal/fingerprinting kit. I was also told that I needed to work on my Spanish (via tutoring etc.) if I wanted to be invited to this program. 

December 17, 2013: Sent my fingerprinting forms and legal kit to Peace Corps Headquarters.

January 4, 2014: Peace Corps received my fingerprinting forms and legal kit.

Medical forms were completed continually, as they constantly asked for more forms and each had a different due date.  

May 21, 2014: Gained Medical Pre-Clearance (based on all those forms I filled out)

June 16, 2014: Notified that I was no longer no…

Peace Corps Application Process

Hey Friends and Family!

Second to "why?", the question people ask me most often is, "What's the Peace Corps application like and is it difficult?"
I never found the application too hard (I did finish it in one afternoon), but I think it can be a bit difficult if you aren't prepared to answer important questions about why you want to join, or why you are right for the Peace Corps, etc.

I like to compare the Peace Corps application to a college application minus the SAT/ACT requirements. There are simple info sections and a short answer section which includes four, 250-500 word essays (don't quote me on that exact word count, but they are very short and doable). In addition, you need three references: an employment supervisor, a volunteer supervisor, and a friend. When they ask for a friend, they really do mean friend, and they take it very seriously that you choose someone you have a close, personal relationship with. In some circumstances, you can substi…

Until 2017, My Dear Ludington...

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Hi Friends and Family!
For the past four 4th of July holidays, I have traveled to the small and charming town of Ludington, Michigan with my best friend Emma and her family. Emma's dad grew up in Ludington and some of her family still lives there to this day. Although I don't have any family in Ludington, and visiting that city on the fourth wasn't a part of my childhood, these trips have become some of my favorite memories, and a new tradition that I look forward to each year. Unfortunately, due to my Peace Corps service, I will miss two summers in Ludington and I won't be able to return until 2017! Logically, I need to write a proper farewell...

My favorite part about Ludington (and the part I will miss the most) is the people, most specifically, the "Ludington 6", consisting of myself, Emma and her sister Phoebe, their cousins Hadley and Maria, and Maria's friend Madeline. Considering I only see these girls one week each year, they all are truly great …

Why the Peace Corps?

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Hey Friends and Family!
Ever since I applied to the Peace Corps, I have gotten so many questions from people along the lines of, "...Why the Peace Corps?..." Well, now is when I answer.
I can't remember an exact moment in time when I decided that I wanted to join the PC, but I can remember the time when I decided that I wanted to help the world in a bigger way (this is the story I told in my PC interview btw):
When I was about 12 years old, my family traveled to the Bahamas for vacation. We stayed at an incredible, all-inclusive resort with all the amenities, and I have to admit, I loved being spoiled and enjoying unlimited sugary drinks and the massive pool just outside our room. One day on our trip, my mom and dad decided to rent scooters (mopeds? maybe that's the word) and ride around the island. So with my dad and sister on one bike and my mom and I on the other, we ventured out of our beautiful resort into the towns and villages of the Bahamas. 
The contrast between…

Welcome!

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Hi Friends and Family!

Welcome to Morgan Through a Lens. You either found your way to this blog by accident, or because you know me personally and you are looking for a way to keep in touch with me as I go abroad. 

If you are the former, then by now you have probably deduced that my name is Morgan and I am going abroad. Where, you ask? I am moving to South Africa to spend 2+ years as a Peace Corps Volunteer. Yay! 

Although I don't leave for South Africa until January 2015 (about 6 months from now) I decided to get a head start on this whole "blog thing". For the next six months I will be updating you on my preparations and plans for the Peace Corps, as well as my daily musings and activities.

Thank you for coming along for the ride. I hope we make it out alive :)

p.s. That's me, Morgan, in all my awkward headshot glory.