Rheanna Murray is in her third year at Portland State University, focusing on African Studies, French, and Gender Studies. For fall 2015 she spent a semester studying abroad in Paris, France to improve her language skills, and is currently abroad in Dakar, Senegal to continue her studies and exploration of francophone cultures.
Rheanna is a feminist, blues dancer, accordionist, francophile, and color-coordinator extraordinaire. Her favorite color is dark magenta, her favorite food is (currently) ceebu jën, and her favorite musician right now is Joanna Newsom. She has three younger brothers and one younger sister back home in Washington State whom she misses dearly and can’t wait to see again in June.
In Dakar, Rheanna is studying Wolof (one of the native Senegalese languages), Senegalese culture, and sustainable development. She’s currently also working as an intern at La Maison Rose (in English: The Pink House), a women’s shelter that houses women and children from abusive or dangerous situations for short- and long-term stays.
This blog is part of Rheanna’s senior capstone project at PSU for her International Studies Major. Every post is directed towards a 4th and 5th grade classroom at Bridger Elementary School in Portland, OR, where the blog is incorporated as part of their class curriculum. She’s excited to continue to share her perspective on living abroad as a white, middle-class, female American in Senegal, and to debunk any misconceptions about Senegal and West Africa in general that might be learned from the American media.