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Staff Spotlight – Andrea Weiss

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Meet Andrea Weiss, FTE Program Coordinator.

Andrea first got involved with FTE when she attended EFL as a student at Hillsdale College in Michigan in 2005. Shortly after she started working as a Program Coordinator in 2008!  Program Coordinators, or PCs, are an integral part of the EFL/EFIAH curriculum by assisting in the leadership instruction and overseeing the daily life of the student participants. During an EFL/EFIAH program, each PC serves as a “big brother” or “big sister” to the student participants by motivating them, reinforcing the program’s lesson objectives, providing guidance and camaraderie, and helping enforce the program’s rules of student conduct. Andreas favorite part of the job is witnessing the personal growth that happens during the week. She says, “It’s amazing to see the students working their way through our leadership curriculum, learning about themselves and how they make choices, and how those choices impact the group.”

Since earning her B.A. from Tufts University, Andrea has focused on teaching ESL to fulfill her passion for helping others and making connections across cultures. In order to develop her teaching skills, she took advantage of opportunities to work and volunteer in Italy, New Zealand, Cambodia, and Tanzania. She is now growing her own small business teaching ESL in Massachusetts.

Andrea has also taught middle school math and ESL, coached track & field, and managed food and beverage operations at PGA tour events around the country. When she isn’t working, you can find Andrea outdoors with her husband – backpacking, kayaking, snowshoeing, or cycling.

Attending and now working at EFL has been a blessing for Andrea because of all the incredible people she gets to meet summer after summer. “The students always inspire me, and the staff members are truly amazing! There’s something about the environment we create at EFL that provides a safe space to challenge yourself and grow,” Andrea says, “and even on staff, with the great people I’m working alongside, I’m able to do that every summer.”

Her favorite activity to facilitate is the jump rope challenge. Of course, working through the challenge yourself (and then debriefing it!) will show participants the valuable takeaways – but Andrea thinks there is a beautiful sense of accomplishment, both individually and as a group, when groups succeed in this challenge!

The Economics for Leaders program teaches young individuals to become aware of the many different ways you can be a leader. When students learn about leadership through our experiential activities, they learn more about themselves and their values, and how that can play a role in their leadership.

 

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