I serve with some of the best volunteers in the world. Every now and again, I like to interview them to learn more about who they are. Today I’m proud to introduce you to one of my fellow Mambwe speakers and dearest friend in Zambia:
Scott Riley – Age 24
Where are you from?
I’m from Richmond, Virginia.
What Peace Corps program do you serve in?
I am a rural aquaculture program (RAP) volunteer for Peace Corps Zambia. Right now I am a trainee, and will graduate to full-fledged volunteer in April. I am learning Mambwe, which is a Bantu language spoken in the Northern province of Zambia near the Mbala region.
What’s your background like?
I have a degree in fisheries science from Virginia Tech. I studied abroad for marine fisheries science at the University of Ghana during my undergrad. I have worked as a fisheries scientist in Virginia and Texas, and even grown my own tilapia before!
Why join Peace Corps?
I wanted to come back to Africa after my experience in Ghana. Iwanted to learn about environmental work in other parts of the world. [Editor’s note: Scott is also one of the friendliest and most easy going people I’ve ever met.]
What sort of secondary projects do you hope to try during your service?
I have almost 10 years of bee keeping experience, so I’d like to try keeping a hive at my site. I am also interested in having a garden, volunteering at a clinic or school, and having a demo fish pond showing best management practices aside from the ponds I’ll be helping farmers to develop.
What are you most excited about for your service in Zambia?
I’m excited to learn how to fish farm at the subsistence and semi-commercial scale, and helping farmers develop their ponds.
What are you most nervous about?
Learning a new language and being able to effectively integrate into my community once I arrive.
*Pssst! March is all about malaria here in Zambia. Check out Matt’s latest post over at Fishing in Zambia for an excellent intro to how this deadly disease is shaping life in Zambia.