Ashley Yang ’11 is working in the Geneva School District this summer as part of “Summer in Service,” an AmeriCorps-sponsored program. AmeriCorps is a national network of programs that engages more than 70,000 Americans each year in service work to meet critical needs in communities throughout the nation. There are various levels of service, ranging from 300-hour summer programs such as the one in which Yang is participating, to 17,000 VISTA programs that are full-time placements for a year. Yang is one of seven HWS students working in various sites around Geneva this summer.
“My position is split part-time between Geneva High School and the Boys & Girls Club at the Community Center,” explains Yang. “I was most interested in this position because I want to teach in a middle or high school. I did one of my teaching placements at Geneva Middle School and found the diverse environment to be challenging and stimulating. Geneva is different from the small town in which I grew up; I learn so much from my students.”
Yang’s job is to bring arts initiatives into the summer program. “I am a passionate supporter of the arts as a dancer, writer and musical theatre enthusiast,” Yang says. “At the Boys & Girls Club, I hope to gain insight into the practicalities of establishing and running an arts curriculum with limited resources at my disposal, while also hopefully sharing with students my own love of the arts and helping them to see how the arts can motivate and change their lives.”
Yang earned her B.A. in history summa cum laude with a minor in education. Next year, she plans to complete the Master of Arts in Teaching program. Ultimately, she hopes to work as a middle or high school social studies teacher. At William Smith, she was a writer for the Martini, and a choreographer and board member of the Koshare Dance Collective.
Last summer, Yang worked at the Exploration Intermediate Summer Program in Wellesley, Mass., where she taught “Model United Nations.”