“Along with an International Studies major, I received a Spanish major and an Education for Empowerment minor from the University of Michigan - the perfect cumulation of all my interests. My focus in the Comparative Culture and Identity sub-plan led me to pursue many classes studying Latin American history, culture, and the region’s contemporary situation in the world. My favorite memory throughout my time in PICS was the chance to study abroad twice in both Costa Rica and Spain. Learning about the language and culture of distinct, yet connected countries was such a unique experience that I will carry with me forever. 

Looking at education through an international perspective has fueled my passion for teaching English language learners in the near future and working in refugee and migrant education on a grander scale in my long-term future. Next year, I plan to teach English in Spain through the Spanish government. In the years to come, I hope to work to improve education access, quality, and equity for individuals in the United States and Internationally. I am thankful for the PICS classes I have taken that have inspired me to work in this field and have helped broaden my perspective. One class that stood out as specifically intriguing and inspiring being International Studies 401 - Education in Comparative and International Context - with Volha Chykina. No matter where I go in the world, I know I will always take my PICS experience with me.”

Marley Duerst

BA International Studies (Comparative Culture and Identity); BA Spanish; minor, Education for Empowerment ‘20

Hometown: Ann Arbor, MI

Affiliations: Michigan Animal Respect Society, Victors FC, the Edward Ginsberg Center, PALMA

Future plans: “Planning to teach English in Spain through a government program.”

Fondest memory of her experience in PICS: “Studying abroad in both Costa Rica and Spain!!”

Is there anything you would like to express to your peers, parents, professors, or others?: “I have so many people to be thankful for. Love you mom and dad!! ”