Global Playground's first fellow, Ryan Drysdale, has begun his year-long fellowship. Mr. Drysdale will depart for Thailand in mid-October to teach for one year at Huay Puung Mai School, where Global Playground unveiled a library in early 2009 and made a contribution of technology this spring.
In preparation for his fellowship, Mr. Drysdale and Global Playground's Chairman, Doug Bunch visited the Royal Thai Embassy in Washington on Sept. 9. Mr. Bunch and Mr. Drysdale met with Mr. Sek Wannamethee, Charge d'Affaires (and acting Ambassador), and Ms. Nuchjaree Klongsungsorn, First Secretary at the Embassy.
Upon graduating in May from the University of Iowa with a B.A. in International Studies, Mr. Drysdale was drawn to Global Playground because it "not only built schools and learning infrastructure, but connected these students to the world."
"I focused more on health, microfinance, and environmental sustainability in school. I wanted some exposure to education,” said Mr. Drysdale, who earned a minor in Political Science and certificate in Sustainability at Iowa.
Mr. Drysdale is currently being trained in Washington by Global Playground's leadership for his upcoming fellowship. He has begun to learn Thai and hopes to have a "firm foundation" in the language upon arrival.
An important part of his role will be to help students at Huay Puung Mai School connect electronically with students at Global Playground's projects in Cambodia and Uganda, as well as at the recently completed Project Honduras, to which Global Playground also plans to send a fellow this fall.
After completing his fellowship with Global Playground, Mr. Drysdale hopes to study international development at the graduate level.
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