Self-Profile, Andrea Zikakis

May 19, 2010

Global Visionaries first came to my attention four years ago through a high school student who was involved with GV. Throughout his time with Global Visionaries, I was privileged to journey alongside him and his family hearing stories about how GV was helping him to be more aware of the world in which he lived as well as how he lived in that world. I was able to dialogue with him about what he was learning through Global Visionaries and how it impacted him how it affected his family.

But perhaps I was most surprised that this learning was not just rendered through an intellectual discourse but rather through active participation. Sure there were some talks, but more than that, there were service projects, group discussions, shared fund-raising, and an invaluable cross-cultural trip to help expose kids to life outside of the United States.

I am a firm believer that people learn best in interactive and engaging environments. It’s one thing to study history, it’s quite another to recognize how our history forms us while simultaneously recognizing that it need not control us. I love that GV fosters opportunities for high-schoolers to be actively involved in their own development and the improvement of the world.

One of my strongest core values is that all people have dignity. Although this value has been with me since childhood, it’s found a fuller expression through living and working in five different countries (the United States, Philippines, Mexico, Canada and Costa Rica). Over and over again, I have been touched by the beauty and goodness of people. Sadly, I have also witnessed how that beauty has been threatened by prejudice, as well as privilege. My pursuit of working towards a just world aligns with GV’s steadfast commitment to bring forth equality to all people.

I believe that young people have the creativity and wherewithal to make significant changes.  I am very excited to be part of GV. I know I have a lot to learn but I couldn’t ask for a better organization to do it with. I look forward to meeting many of you in the days and months ahead.

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