To Teach & Travel Organizers,
Five years ago i recall sitting in the basement of my home in Burlington, Ontario, Canada and thinking "How can i spend my summer". The typical answers clouded my mind, from going on vacation to sun tanning in the warm weather of Canada. However, although my initial thoughts seemed very cliche for a 2nd year University student i was quickly presented with an opportunity of a life time.
I heard about this organization that was offering to take students abroad, covering most of their expenses, and providing them with a stipend. Without even considering any further i begged my parents for permission, and when they asked me which country i was referring to i responded "I have no clue". Upon speaking with the organizers i realized they wanted us to travel to Turkey and participate in Teach & Travel, a program designed to engage North Americans and Turkish students, a program that would bridge the gap between two very distinct places. Our goal was to teach English to these students and at the same time explore the beautiful scenery of Turkey... without much hesitation my parents gave me the nod and i was on my way.Read More
Now thinking back five years later i see the benefit that such a brief month long program has provided me. I went from rarely caring about others to working tirelessly for my community, from a terrible student in Canada to attending one of the most prestige universities in the world, University of Chicago. I went from an immigrant that was content on working for minimum wage to an aspiring professional who was not content unless i received a PhD. Teach & Travel opened my eyes to the society outside of America & Canada. It gave me a window into what i could or couldn't be, and most importantly it gave me the opportunity to network with likeminded individuals who were far more intelligent, successful and driven than me.... it was that feeling in Turkey that motivated me to be as good as the friends that i had created. No longer was i content with being mediocre, i wanted to be more... and the main reason is because of those people i was surrounded with during my Teach & Travel experience.
From the bottom of my heart, thank you for the memories!Read Less
After a month I was in love with the nature and the people of Kastamonu. Apparently, there is a tale that says once someone drinks from this well, he will back to Kastamonu in five years. I finally understood how this came about and why, after one month I was in love with this place. I got here by chance and now I didn’t want to leave this beautiful, majestic town, the people I met and the memories will always stay with me. I guess I will be back in five years, at least I will have an excuse (the curse of the well). Now it is the fourth year since I visited Kastamonu where I did the teach and travel program and I am seriously thinking of going back there for no reason, for no well curse but for the great memories and the great people I met and still keep in touch with.
It might be a cliché but life is better lived when we take on new and unexpected experiences. So my advice is instead of doing the usual, do the unexpected. Go and participate in the Teach and Travel Program, be open minded and you will get only unforgettable experiences out of it.