FRANKFORT — Biology major Hailee Wilson has always dreamed of traveling to other countries. However, the graduating senior read an email in October that combined both of her goals: education and travel. Wilson will head to Cape Town, South Africa, on June 14 to participate as a volunteer with One Heart Source.
The California-based One Heart Source is an organization that has designed and operated volunteer programs for university students who seek to broaden their context of humanity and the world through results-oriented service learning.
After Wilson graduates from Kentucky State University in May, she will teach mathematics and reading to students at an academy in South Africa for a month.
“This will allow me to do something more, become more worldly and experience other perspectives. This seems like the perfect opportunity for me,” Wilson said. “There will be people from all over the world in this program, so I will learn their perspectives.”
Although the Las Vegas native has applied to dental schools such as Howard University, University of Louisville, the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, the University of Michigan and Detroit Mercy, she anticipates that her volunteer work will be life-changing.
“The organization focuses on cultural immersion, so we’ll get a chance to talk with local activists, artists, and politicians,” she said. “I think it will be eye-opening, and it might even change my path. I’m planning to attend dental school, but I kind of think that I’m meant to do more.”
Wilson said that her parents are supportive and have been instrumental in fundraising through her web page. She will need to raise $4,200 to cover her expenses in South Africa and get several vaccines to prepare for her trip.