Nyumbani Village will welcome its newest Princeton in Africa(PiAf) fellow Bear Goldstein this September. Bear is the 8th PiAf fellow to work in the Village. He follows Shan Nagar, who completed his year in July. Bear will serve as the Village’s volunteer coordinator and sustainability fellow for the next year until September 2018. Read more to learn all about Bear and his future work in Nyumbani Village!
Name: Bear Goldstein
Hometown: Dallas, Texas
College/University: Princeton University
College major: Psychology
Interests/hobbies: Hiking, camping, music, photography
Month of Arrival in Village: September
Fun Fact: I lived in a school bus for 2 months during the summer of 2017
Had you ever traveled or lived in an African country prior to this year?
Africa is a new frontier for me. I have never traveled to or lived in an African country. This will be my first experience on the continent.
Why did you decide to do Princeton in Africa?
My sister initially sparked my interest in Africa. While I have never been to Africa, she taught in a rural village in Ghana as part of her own Princeton experience. She conveyed to me powerful accounts of both the culture and spirit of the people, but also of the great obstacles they face. It is precisely that combination—a spirited people committed to their communities but also facing great challenges—that inspired me to pursue a Princeton in Africa fellowship.
What excited you about the Nyumbani Village placement?
The Nyumbani Village placement seemed particularly impactful. Generally speaking, I wanted to be a part of a small community. An intimate setting and hands-on experiences were something that I was looking for when researching different posts. Also, I knew I wanted to work in the field of sustainable development, so this post seemed like a good fit. Many fellows report working as both a volunteer coordinator and a sustainability fellow, which seems like an interesting range of responsibility that is congruent with my interests and skills.
What are you most looking forward to?
There are many appealing aspects of Nyumbani Village, including the new perspectives and skills that I will develop. However, what I am most excited about is making connections with the people in and around the village. I’m really looking forward to forming relationships with and learning from the people that live in and work at such an impressive place.
What do you see yourself doing as a future career?
My career path is undetermined. Though I have been fortunate enough to attend strong academic institutions, I recognize that higher education and traditional academic structures have limitations. There are still experiences I want to have—mostly outside of the classroom—that I should learn before I can concretely define my career goals. However, I am most interested in the field of sustainable development. This post seems like an invaluable opportunity to explore the field and ultimately shape and structure my career path.
Thank you Bear for sharing with us and we wish you luck in your fellowship year!