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Doane Launches the ‘Doane Corps' Post-Graduate Program

The first Doane Corps 2007 graduates prepare to leave for KenyaTwo 2007 Doane College graduates left this week for six months of volunteer service in Kenya -- the first participants in Doane Corps, a new program of post-graduate international volunteer service.

A donation by Maynard Fricke of Montezuma, Kan., helped launch the new program to engage students in community service in developing countries, beginning in Africa.

The program builds on Doane's emphases of leadership, global awareness, diversity and service learning.

Amy Sherwood of Mitchell and Shawna Clement of Lincoln will pioneer Doane Corps with their service in the Rift Valley Province of Kenya, about three hours northwest of the capital, Nairobi. Both will teach in the Special Unit of the Ol-Ng'arua Primary government school and also in the Ol-Ng'arua regular primary school.

The Special Unit is a division of the government school for physically and mentally challenged children, offering classroom instruction, room and board. The primary school serves the Ng'arua district for several hundred children. Sherwood and Clement will join the primary school faculty in special-needs instruction and student care. Sherwood will help teach general science and biology, while Clement will help teach English language, reading, and writing in the regular primary school. 

During their Doane Corps service, Sherwood and Clement will stay in Gachura village with the Kinyanjui family. The family includes Isaac Kinyanjui, who spent a month in residence at Doane College in April 2007, lecturing and visiting classes. A naturalist and wildlife guide, he previously worked with Doane Professor Betty Levitov through her Semester in Africa program. The Doane alumnae hope to become part of the Kinyanjui family and village life. 

Clement graduated in 2007 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in sociology and English. Sherwood earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Biology in 2007. Both participated in the Doane College Semester in Africa during the fall of 2006 with 13 other students and Levitov, living and studying in Ethiopia, Kenya, Tanzania, Malawi, Zambia, Botswana, Namibia, and South Africa. 

Sherwood and Clement are members of the Roots & Shoots organization, Jane Goodall's ecological and humanitarian program at Doane College.  Sherwood was a founder and president of the organization from October 2005 to May 2006.

Doane has a history of educational connections in Africa, which began with a 1996 Interterm to Egypt and Kenya led by Levitov. Levitov led another Interterm to Africa in 2005 and three full semesters of study in Africa in 1998, 2002, and 2006. She also will lead an alumni trip to Tanzania and Kenya in July of 2008.

Doane will select graduates for the Doane Corps annually through a competitive application process.

For more information, email Professor Betty Levitov (betty.levitov@doane.edu); Jan Willems, Director of International Programs (jan.willems@doane.edu); or Karla Cooper, College Chaplain and Service-Learning Coordinator (karla.cooper@doane.edu).