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    • Aug 21 1:17PM
    • Penn Sophomore Speaks at U.N. Human Rights Session in Geneva
    • In testimony before the United Nations Human Rights Council in Geneva, Benjamin Fogel spoke out against the repression of political freedom, false imprisonment and the absence of an independent judiciary in Belarus. But Fogel isn’t a world leader or foreign-policy expert. He’s a student starting his sophomore year at the University of Pennsylvania.

      How the 19-year-old from the Philadelphia suburb of Bala Cynwyd came to have a voice on the world stage is a tale of tenacity that began when he challenged himself to engage with the broader world around him before earning a degree.

      This summer, Fogel was an intern with the Geneva office of U.N. Watch, a non-governmental organization that has special consultative status to the United Nations Economic and Social Council. Its mission is to monitor the U.N. to ensure that it lives up to the principles established in its founding charter.

      Fogel arrived ... Read More

    • Aug 21 2:48PM
    • Penn Student Assists in Developing an Economic Growth Plan in Guatemala
    • In a very poor but picturesque region of Guatemala, Seth Amos spent the summer working to help a town to develop an economic growth strategy.  

      Through Penn Abroad’s International Internship Program, Amos spent 10 weeks in San Juan la Laguna in the Sololá district of western Guatemala working at Ati’t Ala’, a non-governmental organization. His task was to help develop a plan to increase tourism to spur economic growth in San Juan. 

      Amos, a senior majoring in economics and Hispanic studies, says the process was very labor intensive. He conducted field work and gathered information for the group. In interviews with tourists, he asked about their perceptions of San Juan and how San Juan compared to other Guatemalan destinations.

      “For the majority of time, I was the only one who spoke English and the only one who could carry out the survey,” says Amos.

      Amos also reviewed ... Read More

    • Aug 15 2:48PM
    • Penn Student May Have Found His Calling While Pursuing Religious Studies
    • What started out as a summer volunteer project and a journey to Thailand to learn about Buddhism may lead to a career choice for University of Pennsylvania student James An.

      An, a senior studying management and religious studies, became interested in exploring Buddhism after taking two courses, Introduction to Buddhism and Living Deliberately: Monk, Saints and the Contemplative Life, both taught by Justin McDaniel, professor of religious studies in the School of Arts & Sciences at Penn.

      “I wanted to go to a country like Thailand where Buddhism is ‘alive’ and see things with my own eyes,” says An, who went to middle school and high school in Vancouver, B.C., but is originally from Gwangmyeong, South Korea.  
      Through www.idealist.org, he found a volunteer project that gave him an opportunity to teach English to novice monks in Chiang Mai, Thailand.
      An taught young Buddhist ... Read More