Why Samoa? Pisikoa share their stories

Why would an archaeologist and an art teacher leave the comfort of their homes in the United States to live in rural Samoa for two years? 

For Jackson Huang, 29, becoming a Peace Corps volunteer is a lifelong dream.

“I wanted to join as a 17-year-old but I wasn’t qualified,” he said.

“So I worked in the Air Force for four years, did my bachelors and now I can finally sign up.”

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An archaeologist and geographic information systems specialist in a national park, Huang said he hopes to use some of his expertise here in Samoa, but firstly he is focused on making a difference.

“I’m a little nervous about learning the language because it’s hard for me to pronounce all the words,” he said.

Twenty-six-year-old Sarah Reed was an art teacher in Florida before she decided to try a full cultural immersion experience.

“Learning the language that way is an amazing way to connect and share culture,” she said.

Ms. Reed said her work as an art teacher showed her the power of art as therapy, and she hopes to have time between English classes to bring some of that to her students too.

“My passion is with art and children, so that would be perfect, really.”

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