Sonoma’s Peace Corps connection

The Peace Corps is celebrating its sixtieth anniversary this week and Taylor Rose Vick rejoices within the alternative to reward her excellence.

“The Peace Corps has modified my life a lot that I need individuals to know that it exists and that it’s a fantastic choice,” she mentioned. Vick was a Peace Corps volunteer, instructing English in highschool in Indonesia for 2 years, then turned an worker. She is now having fun with a profession as an Funding Supervisor at her headquarters in Washington DC

She was briefly again within the Sonoma Valley lately, visiting her dad and mom, Vance and Kelly Rose, and celebrating her mom’s sixtieth birthday, as apparently 1961 was a 12 months that marked her brilliant future. She chatted within the backyard of the general public service company based by President John F. Kennedy via which 141,000 volunteers have served in 140 international locations.

Vick graduated from Arizona State College in 2010 with a journalism diploma and fears that “print journalism is dying.” Having accomplished an internship at Index-Tribune Sonoma and Phoenix Residence and Backyard journal and written for the Arizona Republic, she wasn’t satisfied that being a journalist was the best way to go.

“I did not actually have a plan and my dad urged I look into the Peace Corps. I utilized instantly. She was thrilled when she was accepted and left for Southeast Asia. She had spent a summer time in Europe and studied for a 12 months in London, however it needed to be a monumental journey. “It was actually onerous to go away as a result of every thing was so unfamiliar, however my household has been very supportive of me and the Peace Corps offers unbelievable coaching.

She flew to East Java with a cohort of 30 volunteers and commenced three months of intensive coaching within the native language and tradition. Then every member of their group was off on their particular person assignments. She moved together with her host household to Madura and began instructing grade 10 and 11 college students how one can enhance their English.

Her college students had been educated in English, however her host household spoke no English in any respect. “It’s important to know if you wish to eat or go someplace, and particularly in the beginning there’s plenty of mime,” she says. Throughout her two years there, she realized to talk Indonesian Bahasa fluently. “It has the identical alphabet, which may be very helpful,” she says.

“One of many strengths of my service was that the scholars had been superb. Type, humorous, grateful and so desirous to be taught, ”she mentioned.

Friendship is one other pleasure attained by his service. She continues to be shut to twenty members of her cohort group, and they’re going to reunite for a 10-year anniversary later this 12 months. And Vick went again to go to twice. “I’ll have a lifelong bond with my host household.”

His dad and mom visited him twice throughout his absence and so they traveled to Vietnam and Thailand collectively. Her mom additionally took an unplanned journey when Vick contracted dengue and spent a couple of days within the hospital earlier than making a full restoration.

She took one other alternative to journey when her service was over, finally returning to Sonoma and pursuing a profession with the Peace Corps. She began out as an intern, which took her to a Senior Funding Specialist place in California and finally to her present position as Supervisor in DC.

Earlier than shifting to the East Coast, a mutual good friend urged that he meet there with one other Sonoman, Ben Vick, a younger lawyer doing postgraduate research at Georgetown College. The couple received married in 2017.

Taylor attended Dunbar Elementary Faculty, was within the first graduating class at Adele Center Faculty, and was within the 2006 class at Sonoma Valley Excessive Faculty. Ben attended St. Francis Solano and Justin Siena and graduated from Santa Clara College and Boston College Legislation Faculty.

The couple get pleasure from residing and dealing within the nation’s capital. “We each love DC. It is a very younger and pleasant metropolis. ”

COVID has created an uncommon time for the Peace Corps, because it has for nearly all organizations. The present 6,000 volunteers all over the world had been repatriated from their postings early final 12 months and it isn’t recognized when they’ll return or when new volunteers can be posted.

Vick is nonetheless optimistic about the way forward for the Peace Corps and the alternatives it affords. “The best way your loved ones and your nation do one thing is only a method. It is superb to be taught in regards to the completely different ways in which different individuals reside. And to be greeted and handled like household by one other household is really superb.

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