Tell us about what makes Manchester special to you?

Edna Rays Ndayisaba, Intern, Manchester Proud

I moved to the United states in the September of 2014 and was welcomed into Manchester NH by the International Institute of New England, New Hampshire. This is the first of the United States I’ve ever seen and everyone was just so kind and welcoming.  I was a little scared of how my first day of school would go at Webster Elementary. However, the moment my 5th grade teacher came to get me from the front office and introduce me to the class is a moment that will stick with me forever. I saw smiles and kids excited to get to know me, which made me excited too. Some of the friends I made that year are still close friends of mine today, many years later, which is so special. I love my community in Manchester and I strive everyday to make it better.

How are you involved with Manchester Proud and the Manchester School District, and why is this work important to you?

Through my School Counselor and Video Production Teacher I was able to land an interview with Manchester Proud, and eventually a summer internship. This internship has just begun so I don’t have much to say for what I’ve done, but I can say I have so many hopes to achieve through this new opportunity that I am so excited to see pan out. As for the Manchester School District, I attend Manchester School of Technology, where I am the Class President for Class of 2022 I change the community in my High School by listening to the students, what their needs are, what they want to see change, and giving them choices for their high school experiences. I just wrapped up our Senior Prom and helped plan that with the rest of the class office, which was so fulfilling to plan something so awesome for so long, and see it come to life.

Fast forward five years: share with us your aspirations and vision for Manchester’s public schools.

I love the Manchester School of Technology, our competency based learning and project based learning has been so helpful for me and I would love to see how other schools might incorporate that into their schools. I want students to truly have an equal opportunity for their definition of success after high school, whether it be a trade or college. I want students to have access to those things and know that they’re out there. Going forward I would love nothing more than rich and important discussions about current events in our world and community, and all voices to be lifted and heard in our classrooms. Education is so vital and MST has shown me just how moving it can be to have open and honest conversations that move us forward together.