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Hudson Valley Early Childhood Student, Local High School Student Discuss Work in African Orphanages and Schools on Monday

MEDIA CONTACT: Eric Bryant (518) 629-8072,
FOR RELEASE: Immediate, Wednesday, Oct. 23, 2013

Hudson Valley Community College’s Early Childhood Club will host a talk by a current student who completed missionary outreach work in southern Africa last summer and a current Albany Academy student who hopes to raise enough funds to start a small school in rural Zambia.

The program, which is open to the public, will be 2 p.m., Monday, Oct. 28, in Higbee Hall, room 100 on the Hudson Valley campus.

Hudson Valley Early Childhood student Emily Groff travelled to Africa as part of a youth group and worked with children in preschools and orphanages near Cape Town, South Africa. She will speak about her experiences and her inspiration for taking the trip.

Albany Academy student Steven Strait was inspired to raise funds to build a rural community schoolhouse after spending three weeks in a remote village in Tanzania, living in and repairing a school, and interacting with villagers and their children. Rural community schools serve areas where children would otherwise have to walk several hours to and from a government sponsored public school. He hopes to begin the project in 2015 following graduation. Strait’s father, David, is a University at Albany anthropologist who has worked in Zambia.

Founded in 1953, Hudson Valley Community College offers 75 degree and certificate programs in four schools: Business; Engineering and Industrial Technologies; Health Science; and Liberal Arts and Sciences; and an Educational Opportunity Center for academic and career training. One of 30 community colleges in the State University of New York system, it has an enrollment of more than 13,000 students, and is known as a leader in distance learning initiatives and workforce training. Hudson Valley has more than 75,000 alumni.