In the summer of 2013, I was one of six supervisors that spent three months volunteering with a youth leadership organization in the southern Mexican state of Oaxaca. We were responsible for the health and safety of teenage volunteers, who lived with a local rural families all over the state. During the week I visited each of my students in his/her respective community. The leadership, task delegation and collaborative skills I developed during my time there have remained indispensable to my effectiveness as a creative professional working in groups of clients, vendors, and designers.

I also used the opportunity to take digital and film photographs. In addition to graphic design, I am enthusiastic about photography and often don’t get enough time in my day-to-day to sink into the discipline the way I’d prefer. I was able to tap into this part of my photo-centric tastes while in Mexico, and it remains part my vision as a designer that I’d like to incorporate into my work more often moving forward.

I fell in-love with Mexico and it’s rich spirit & generosity;
the vibe in the air is teeming with life. People don’t take their existence for granted: they live up every moment, whether it be with cheerfulness, genuine sorrow, or easy forgiveness.

- Natasha, Project Supervisor

The hard part about distance is that you never know if the people you meet will forget about you. These women have taught me that although time moves on and places change, we can keep them in our hearts and bring a part of their spirit into ours as we continue our personal journeys.

- Alexandra, Project Supervisor

It is hard to explain how an Amigos experience affects you. Before it, your mind is open to all possibilities. While you’re in it, you are constantly moving, feeling like you are learning. In retrospect, you find it rewarding in its great challenge. That said, there is no better feeling than when it comes to an end: a catharsis.

- Amelia, Project Supervisor