Saturday, March 17, 2012

Student Profile: Sarah Leone

Sarah Leone, working in the Homegirls Cafe garden.
by Ann Abbott

I am very excited to have my former student, Sarah Leone, visit my Spanish and social entrepreneurship class via Skype right after spring break. She lives in Los Angeles and works at Homegirl Cafe, a nonprofit that I have used as a case study for branding and linguistically and culturally appropriate programming for the past few years.

Here is some background information on Sarah:
Sarah Leone, left, gardening.

  1. As a University of Illinois undergraduate student, Sarah took both "Spanish in the Community" and "Spanish and Entrepreneurship." 
  2. For her community service learning work, Sarah worked at the Refugee Center.
  3. Sarah took coursework in community informatics which included a team project to create a website for the Refugee Center. That website is still in use and serves the Refugee Center's needs well.
  4. Sarah spent a year in Barcelona as a study-abroad student.
  5. Sara did a Spanish & Illinois Summer Internship at ACCION Chicago, gaining experience in the nonprofit world in general and microfinance in particular. (Unfortunately, we no longer offer the summer internships because of funding cuts.)
  6. Sarah has a food blog with tasty, healthy recipes: Culinary Remedy.
  7. Sarah works at Homeboys Industries. Specifically, Sarah works at Homegirl Cafe in their urban gardening program. Here are some examples of Sarah's work: a gardening workshop series; her series of blog posts within the Homegirl Cafe's blog posts--Sarah's garden tips; a video of Sarah preparing income-generating items from the organization's garden.
Students will have the privilege of seeing and hearing Sarah talk about Homeboy Industries, Homegirl Cafe, urban gardening and more. In the following class period we will explore Homeboy Industries more closely and focus on these topics: branding and linguistically and culturally appropriate programming. I will share information about that lesson later.

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