Back to
Two Dragons welcome the sunrise with an improvised dance atop the Andes. Photo by Ryan Gasper.

Hi I’m Allyson!

Hey everyone ! I’m getting so excited, reading everyone’s posts … :+)

My name is Allyson. I was born & raised in California, 30 minutes east of San Francisco. I graduated from high school last year, & wanted to take a gap year to learn as much as I could about community-building & international ed — I wondered why & how people all over the world make connections across language barriers, geographical divides, and cultural boundaries. Dragons has ended up being the perfect environment to dive into those things — this will actually be my second time around on a gap semester with this org! I’m sure no two courses are the same, but my time in Senegal & Guinea with WTBD made me even more excited and curious about what it means to be a global citizen.

Part of why I’m so interested in these things is because of my roots — my parents are first-gen immigrants from the Philippines. I grew up pretty disconnected from my culture & family on the other side of the world, living in a suburb & not speaking Tagalog, but I made an effort to learn more about both Filipino and Filipino-American history during and after high school. There are some pretty significant parallels between the Philippines & Latin America due to a shared history of Spanish colonization — I can’t wait to explore those themes more once we start our travels!

I’m definitely a creator & storyteller at heart, and have so much faith in the power that art has as a tool to express, subvert, & empathize. I love to draw & animate, to write & read, to play music, to film, to perform … to make stuff! Outside of that, I’ve organized benefit concerts, directed a satirical play, been an advocate for an educational equity coalition, and paneled for youth activism conferences. When I go out with friends, we’re usually watching movies, playing video games, or drinking boba.

I can’t wait to get started! See you all soon.