Intern Spotlight: Marley Henschen

This is the third in a series of spotlights on our summer 2018 student interns.  Learning Life’s students this summer are assisting with planning, fundraising, curriculum development, and international family-to-family projects focused on community photography and food culture as part of our Citizen Diplomacy Initiative (CDI).  Marley Henschen, interviewed below, is, among other things, helping with research, outreach for the DC World Affairs Pipeline, and youth activities and family outreach in Washington DC’s Ward 8.

Marley HenschenWhere were you born and raised?

I was born in Laconia, New Hampshire, but moved to Scituate, MA at a young age and was raised there. I loved growing up in Scituate because I could spend the summers in beautiful weather at the beach but also got to experience cold winters and snowstorms. Although I do not think I will ever move back, it is a place that will hold my heart and I love to go back and visit.

What school do you attend, and what is your year and major there?

I am currently a senior at The Catholic University of America here in Washington, D.C.  I am in an accelerated program to receive my Master’s in Sociology and Business Management. My degree is concentrated in globalization and public policy.

What do you like to do in your free time?

I have been doing dance for as long as I can remember. Now, I am the captain of the dance team at Catholic University, which takes up a lot of my free time.   I also work as a waitress and a coffee shop barista.  Although I work because I need the income, I genuinely enjoy working in customer service jobs where I can interact with other people.  I also volunteer when I can with The Homeless Children’s Playtime Project which works with homeless children in Washington, D.C.  When I’m not working or dancing, I love exercising and going to the beach.

Is there a life experience you have had that has particularly shaped you thus far?  If so, what is it, and how has it shaped you?

An experience that has shaped me was when my family adopted my younger cousin two years ago.  He came from a tough background and did not have the support or guidance he needed to become successful.  Although my mother has eight children of her own, she selflessly decided to take the situation into her own hands and take care of my cousin.  This has inspired me to help others even when it is inconvenient for myself.  It also made me very grateful for everything I have and the family that I have to support me.

What are your career plans?

Upon graduation, I would like to take time off to volunteer, preferably abroad in Africa. When I’m finished doing volunteer work, I hope to move back to Washington, D.C. and work for a non-profit that directly helps children.

Why did you choose to intern with Learning Life?

I started babysitting and teaching dance classes to kids at a young age, and that is how I realized my passion for working with children. I wanted to intern with Learning Life because I love working with other people and helping the community as much as I can, especially when it involves working with kids. The mission of Learning Life to connect people across borders through learning is something that I not only support, but also would like to make part of my everyday life.

What is the most beautiful place you have seen on Earth, and why is it so beautiful?

The most beautiful place on Earth that I have ever seen is Rome, Italy.  I have had the opportunity to visit Rome twice and both times the architecture and history took my breath away.  I love learning about different cultures and being able to experience new things outside my comfort zone so traveling to Italy and seeing all the sites was amazing to me.  My all-time favorite was when I was able to have dinner on the rooftop of a hotel that overlooks the Trevi Fountain.