CORTLANDT, N.Y. -- Cortlandt's Melissa Bright Dishart begins a two-year journey Tuesday in the hopes of improving the lives of hundreds of people she's never met in Guatemala.
The 22-year-old Peace Corps volunteer will learn the local language and work to improve the living conditions in an impoverished village. While it's a feat that might make many nervous, the Somers High School graduate said she has been waiting for this opportunity ever since she joined the Peace Corps.
“I wouldn’t have been able to accept this opportunity without the support of my family and friends. They motivate me to work hard and strive to be the best version of myself each day,” said Dishart in a news release. “My dad is a college professor, my mom works for a non-profit, and several of my family members have served or are currently serving our country in the military. I’ll miss them every day, but I can’t wait to find out what’s waiting for me in Guatemala.”
Dishart graduated from George Washington University last month and said she's ready for the journey ahead.
"As a newly graduated alumna of GW, I feel motivated to figure out what it is I’m really good at," she said in the release. "I have so much more to learn about myself and the world. I’m ready for that push out of my comfort zone."
When she arrives, Dishart will become a part of a group of only 95 volunteers working in Guatemala in the areas of health, youth development, environment and agriculture. Dishart also joins the 448 New York residents currently serving in the Peace Corps and more than 12,863 New York residents who have served in the Peace Corps since it was established in 1961 by President Kennedy, according to the release.
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