Greeting Friends and Family!
To cover the basics, my name is Grace Mott and I am a junior transfer student at the University of Iowa. I am a Sociology major with a specialized track in criminology. Those of you who know me however, (or follow me on facebook) know that I live for scuba diving and I am crazy passionate about marine wildlife and conservation! This spring, I have been offered the opportunity to study abroad in the beautiful country of Tanzania. This program would allow me to spend the entire academic semester of Spring 2016 there! During my time there I will partake in an intensive instruction on coastal ecology and marine conservation. Half of the time will be spent in the classroom becoming equipped with all the knowledge and skills necessary for the second half, which will be spent creating and conducting a research project of my own!
I am beyond excited to immerse myself in a culture that is radically different from any I have previously experienced. The region I will be spending the greatest portion of my time in is the Zanzibar archipelago and the world heritage site Stonetown. As you can imagine, there is a lot of beauty in this faraway location.
Tourism is what has allowed the agrarian society of Zanzibar to thrive and prosper, but it has also been very detrimental to the environment and livelihood of many of the people there. The importance of what I will accomplish during my time in Tanzania is another component of this trip that has thoroughly captured my heart. I will have the ability to make positive influential changes in the lives of the people there, as well as on the exquisite coastlines and in the magnificent coral reefs.
While the ways this trip will change my life for the better are priceless, the trip itself is not. I have already received several scholarships and I am working closely with my organization’s financial advisors to obtain additional assistance. Unfortunately, my efforts have not yet completely funded my trip and that is why I am reaching out to all you lovely people! My goal is to raise $5,000 to pay for visa expenses, plane tickets, and tuition. Whether you chose to contribute through financial support, spreading the word about my dream, or through sending positive encouragement my way, anything will be immensely appreciated. All my supporters should expect a postcard from Africa this Spring J I also plan to keep a blog of my trip, so you all will be able to keep up with my adventures and stay updated on my project. Feel free to message me for more information! Thank you so much for all your time and consideration.
Best, and hope to hear from you soon!
P.S. I will be the first person from the University of Iowa to study abroad in Tanzania!