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Where are they now?! A reflection on the impact of SWT from Jordanian Alumni

By: Amber Hayes, Greenheart Exchange Cultural Outreach Manager

Last month, Amber, the Outreach Manager, traveled to Jordan on a Job Fair! At this event, she got the chance to connect with some of our program alumni and was able to hear about the impact of the program, where they are at now, and how Summer Work Travel has influenced their lives!

Read on for an update on some amazing Jordanian participants and to hear their reflections from a summer (or two!) in the United States.

Sultan Tayel Eqab Elmanaseer

Sultan is returning to the program for a second year after an awesome and successful first experience! His first summer in the United States included the opportunity to be an Ambassador Scholar, quite a few volunteer projects, and the chance of a lifetime to attend the 2017 Greenheart Global Leaders Conference! The program was so impactful, he is returning for a second summer. Sultan will graduate from school in June 2018 and was accepted into a Master’s program in the United States! He will be going to Gannon College in Pennsylvania this fall. We’re so excited to hear about the opportunities that have opened up for Sultan and his changes in perspective!

Zeyad Ahmad Barakat Elayan

Zeyad was a participant in 2016 and is returning to the program again this year! He now plays for the men’s national basketball team in Jordan and said that the Summer Work Travel program really helped him grow. Before the program, he admitted that he had an ego and thought that he was the most important person in the room. However, his summer in the United States helped him to become friendlier and see outside of himself. What an awesome growth in perspective!

Reem khaled mohammad Albakeer 

Reem was one of five girls placed at her host organization, and she was really nervous about that opportunity, she was living in a different place and would be surrounded by men! She was also worried that her father and mother would not approve of this placement; however, after having an awesome Summer Work Travel experience, Reem explained that her time in the United States helped to change her perspective and made her more comfortable to speak up as a woman. She wants to bring this resolve back to Jordan and encourage other girls to come on the program so they can find their voice. She’s well on her way to advocating for other Jordanian women to participate in cultural exchange – this summer, she’s already convinced one of her female friend’s parents to let her friend join the program!

Khaleel Amjed Khaleel Haddadin

Khaleel was a Summer Work Travel participant in 2016 and grew a lot during his time in the United States. He explained, before traveling to the USA, he was very quiet, shy, and not confident about his English skills. However, after just one summer, he was able to improve his English greatly and come out of his shell! He never thought that three months would have such an impact in his life, and he was extremely proud of his own growth, as well as when others recognized it in him!  At the Job Fair, Khaleel even helped other shy candidates loosen up, as he told them about the transformative opportunities of the program. He will graduate in June and is hoping to do another exchange program in the future or apply to a Master’s program and continue pursuing his education.

Do you want to see your life transformed by a cultural exchange experience? Look into the Summer Work Travel program with Greenheart Exchange today – your transformative summer is right around the corner!