ARHS African Scholars Program to share exchange experience

Juffureh PhotoThe African Scholars Program at Amherst Regional High School will share experiences from its recent exchange trip to Senegal and The Gambia on Monday, April 11, at 7:30 p.m. in the high school cafeteria. The program is free and open to the public.

Students and faculty who participated in the February exchange trip will show photos of West African schools, communities, and cultural sites; offer reflections on the experience of living with families in Dakar, the capital of Senegal, and Sifoe and Gunjur, villages in The Gambia; and present short research projects on topics such as education, gender roles, and environmental challenges. Refreshments will be provided.

Students who participated in the exchange program are seniors Hannah Ackerman, Forest Carlsen-Neiger, Elende Connor, Dominic Gerace, Bowen Keller, Charlotte Landeryou, Emilia Mann, Nevin Murray, and Rowan Sacks; and sophomores Augusta Fricke and Leija Helling. Faculty who accompanied the group on the exchange were Momodou Sarr and Ericka Alschuler.

The exchange trip, the culmination of several years’ planning and fundraising, was the second in an ongoing exchange. Originally scheduled for 2015, the trip was postponed due to the Ebola outbreak in West Africa. The first African Scholars exchange trip took place in 2013, and students from Senegal visited Amherst Regional in 2014. Groups from Senegal and The Gambia are expected in 2017.

For additional information, e-mail adviser Bruce Penniman at penniman@english.umass.edu.

PHOTO CAPTION:

African Scholars Program students and their Gambian hosts visited Juffureh, where Kunta Kinte, the hero of Alex Haley’s Roots, was captured and sold into slavery. Members of the Kinte family still live in the area. The motto on the monument says “Never Again.”

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