Boston students reflect on their ASC adventure

Meet Kinsley and Marjories, two students who are volunteering at the ASC as part of an international work placement program at Boston University. Last week, they sat down with us to chat about their time at the ASC so far. April 08, 2024
Boston university students pose on front of mural in ASC's newtown building
Marjories Vasquez and Kinsley Grant are volunteering at the ASC as part of an International Placement Program at Boston University

Boston University students Kinsley Grant and Marjories Vasquez’s experience volunteering at the ASC as part of an international work placement program has been eye opening and life changing for both. 

Kinlsey, a psychology major, has added valuable expertise to the ASC, as well as taking another step on his journey to becoming a therapist. 

Working with both the Community Engagement team and the Intensive Support team, he’s gained profound insights into the challenges faced by people seeking asylum in Australia and the importance of a personal and practical support system.

According to Kinsley, both roles have been a great help in preparing for his future career. In Community Engagement, he has witnessed first-hand the value in creating a community for the people we support. Working with the Intensive Support team has opened his eyes to another side of the organisation, working closely with individuals who are struggling with their mental or physical wellbeing. 

“I think that for individuals seeking asylum they definitely need the community the most because they can feel really isolated in the process,” Kinsley says.

Marjories is studying biology and public health and hopes to go to medical school to further her studies after graduation. She draws parallels between her current role and her future aspirations, seeing a common thread of assisting those in need – a driving force behind her pursuit of medicine.

“Obviously it’s very different, the things I do here and the things that I would do in a future career in medicine”, Marjories explains. “But if you look at it closely, it’s all about helping people in any way I can. The reason I was interested in medicine to begin with is because I really wanted to help more vulnerable populations where it’s harder for them to get any sort of healthcare.”

While working at the ASC has been a learning curve for Marjories, her own experience of immigrating from Honduras to the United States provides a valuable shared experience.

“I relate to the struggle of coming to a new place, and assimilating to a new culture,” she says. “But it’s definitely different in Australia. You don’t have work rights, you don’t have a lot of rights that are easier to get in the US as an immigrant.”

In just a few short weeks, Kinsley and Marjories have made incredible memories from their time at the ASC. As they transition back to their studies and continue on their respective paths, both will carry with them an abundance of lessons, inspiration, and foundational experiences.

Statement from the Asylum Seekers Centre on the cancellation of Palestinian visas The ASC’s submission to the inquiry into Labor’s draconian deportation bill