In Mexico’s universities, each graduating student is required to complete a 3-month period of social service with an institution of their choice. There are benefits for each party-the students get real life experience which can help them in landing a full-time job, they develop professional skills, gain insight into how things really work outside of a classroom, and have an opportunity to contribute their knowledge and skills. For the participating institution it’s basically free labor. In the office that I work in (CONANP, Mexican equivalent to US National Park Service) we’ve had some students come through and do some interesting projects. Depending on the topic of their project I sometimes work closely with them.
Monse came to us in the beginning of the year and proposed a plan to work on environmental education. Like all plans of young, energetic people, it was rather ambitious. My colleagues and I worked with her to bring her ideas to life, and her final project ended up being a series of educational activities designed around teaching primary school children about local biodiversity.
In the beginning of the year our office got a letter from an elementary school teacher, asking us to visit them so that their students could interview us and learn more about local conservation efforts. We did that interview and from that day were requested to do educational workshops/lectures with the school’s teachers. Since my colleagues and I were busy with other ongoing projects, we proposed to Monse that with our support, she could take responsibility of fulfilling this request. Below are photos from Monse’s project.
Thanks Monse for all your hard work, and to the participating elementary school in Tlatepexe, Metztitlan, Hidalgo for their interest. Thanks also to my colleagues Pablo and Daniel who helped in the implementation of the activities.
Disclaimer: The contents of this website are mine personally and do not reflect any position of the U.S. government or the Peace Corps.