Kristina Rosinsky

Kristina Rosinsky (Undugu Society of Kenya - USK): Kristina graduated in 2007 with a BA in government and politics (magna cum laude) from the University of Maryland-College Park with minors in French and history. During her time at university Kristina did study abroad in Nice, France for five months and then worked in Huancayo, Peru teaching English to children in early 2007. In her senior year Kristina wrote a thesis titled “The Effect of the Mexico City Policy on International Development: An Attack on Reproductive Health and Family Planning Worldwide,” which received high honors. Prior to her fellowship, Kristina worked at AP as an intern and then as the Assistant Information Manager.

Phasing Myself Out

09 Oct

During last Saturday’s workshop, I was sitting on the stack of chairs pushed to the side of the room relaxing. This was really odd, since normally during a workshop, especially one that takes place at the computer lab, I would be pulled in every direction, trying to answer the 10 questions that are hurtled at me at each second.

Teaching people how to blog and post photos to the web is not as easy as you might think. Finding the address bar of Internet Explorer was sometimes a five-minute task, so just imagine how long it used to take my students to simply sign into their blog. The first sessions were sometimes painful, but also so rewarding once I saw the students beginning to remember how to do things without me having to give any hints. The questions began to reduce in number and soon, other students began stepping in to answer those that remained.

Some students have made so much progress that they are now taking over for me. I selected Martin and Joseph, two members of USK Street Children and Youth Associations, to work with me on a full-time basis so that I can start phasing myself out. I want my departure in November to be as seamless as possible so from 9-5, five days a week, I am emptying my brain to these two motivated young men, so they can lead the project once I am back home.

Their first test was Saturday the 20th, the first workshop since mid-August. The whole week prior, Joseph and Martin were learning the skills to be taught so that they were able to demonstrate them and answer questions from the other students. During this class, I still provided the structure, but Martin and Joseph were doing much of the teaching, with me stepping in only to make additions or clarifications. They took their role seriously and soon the other students were calling them Teacher as well. Each class since then has been an improvement, with them stepping up more and more.

Martin showing students how to make folders on the desktop to organize their photos.

As I was sitting in the background during that first session back, observing the new teachers in action, I had a smile on my face. This was not just due to a reduction in my stress level, which probably played a part, but due more to the realization that this project is starting to slip out of my hands and fall into the hands of the youth themselves. And that is exactly where it is meant to be.

Posted By Kristina Rosinsky

Posted Oct 9th, 2008


  • Debby R

    October 9, 2008


    It seems so sad that your are phasing yourself out of the project you started. You have done very well teaching these children and showing them things that they would have most likely never had the chance to
    learn. You should be very proud of yourself in all that you have done over these months.

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