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Lorek: Peace Corps Update

Emily Lorek '14 (Cohort 24) is in her last stretch of her service with the Peace Corps. She is living in a small, rural community in Costa Rica and serves as a Youth Development volunteer.  At Marietta College, Lorek majored in Psychology and minored in Spanish and Leadership Studies. Throughout her service, she has primarily worked with high school and elementary school students.
As she recently mentioned, "After working with the community to assess strengths, desires, and needs through a diagnostic, we worked together to develop a variety of programs for young children, adolescents, and parents, mostly all focusing on personal development and strengthening interpersonal relationships."

Specific projects have included goal-setting, leadership, and life-skill development for teens; friendship skills for upper elementary students; and emotional recognition and expression for kindergartners. She also has worked with several women in the community to establish a women's group, providing new avenues for support, educational opportunities, and socialization.
Last May, she graduated with a master's degree in Global Youth Development from the University of Montana. "My master's level courses were geared towards grassroots services and development for helping professionals (counselors, teachers, development workers, etc.)," she said. "I finished my classes before joining the Peace Corps in 2015. In addition to professional development and the opportunity to support communities internationally, the Peace Corps has also served as my internship for my studies. Throughout my service I have been academically active writing my thesis to finish my degree. Once I return to the U.S. I will begin looking for jobs in community development based programs; hopefully with a bilingual opportunity."

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