Marina Buciuc ’07
Chisinau, Moldova/Kewaunee, Wisconsin

Marina is one of three FLEX Alumni representatives invited to represent the FLEX Alumni community and program for Civic Education Week 2013:

This week a lot of attention was paid to social media, tweeting, facebooking and presenting. I myself had quite a lot of presentations to make, speeches to hold, tweets and posts to share. Throughout all this marathon of intense information exchange lots of great ideas were outspoken whether among FLEX students themselves, students and alumni, students and Department of State officials, alumni and representatives of Congress, Senate, Department of State, American Councils, etc. It is worth mentioning that for the first time in my international experience, Moldova was not underrepresented. I’ve got to discuss the FLEX impact and the issues of my country with the director of Office of Ukraine, Moldova and Belarus Affairs, Baxter Hunt and his staff, first US ambassador to Moldova, Mary Pendleton, and many other extremely intelligent people interested in my country which until now leaves me under impression.

One thing that was noted during the presentations, whether mine or not, was not just what was presented, but how it was done.  The enlightening idea dims if it can’t attract attention, that’s why it was such a blast to watch the results of Grassroots activity where the FLEX students had to come up with projects and promote them. In a simple conference room we’ve got to witness how students went beyond using simple promotion tools like posters to cheerleading activities, freshly made up catchy songs, almost drama performances and a new “Veggie” version of Harlem Shake. With this kind of promotion it is impossible to ignore the idea which it stands for, hence it is a great way to overcome one of the greatest difficulties while implementing projects –  people involvement. It looks promising to see that FLEX students can make a show from a simple idea, something that is going to help them in $20 challenge competition and in communities where not too many additional resources are available. I believe that with such bright minds the future of the program is secured, the communities to which the students will return will prosper and no bright idea will ever fade. With small given, FLEX alumni do big things relying only on cooperation and always seeking mind, something that can never be taken and goes “viral” if shared.

Learn more about the FLEX Program here: