From Tanzania to Indonesia: A World of Experiences

Emily (far right, in green) with her team of Habitat volunteers for their training session in Chicago before heading to Indonesia.

After graduation, Emily Lawson ’03 became an elementary school teacher at a brand new charter school, Dekalb PATH Academy, located on OU’s land behind Greek Row. She went on to travel the world, live abroad and most recently earn her degree from Yale University School of Nursing in May 2010.

After participating in Habitat International builds in Tanzania (2002), India (2005) and Romania (2009), Emily is now leading her first team of Habitat volunteers to Batam, Indonesia this summer. She attended a training in Chicago that outlined the responsibilities and procedures of being a team leader and recently arrived in Thailand to travel to the small community of Bua Yai where she lived and worked for the Peace Corps 2005-2007. Below is a sample of her experiences as related through her blog.

Emily Lawson in Romania on a Habitat for Humanity build in 2005.

By Emily Lawson ’03

Before departing from the U.S. I had an unfamiliar mix of excitement, anticipation and fear surrounding this trip. Would I be able to communicate? Would I feel totally out of place? How would my community (Bua Yai) react. I hardly slept the night before departure (which combined with 24 hrs of travel, time change and jet lag has left me feeling tired to my gut. Thank God for midwifery school’s lesson of function, participation and enjoyment on extremely minimal sleep!). So far, things are going great and my fears have been appeased. Here’s the story thus far… Continue reading