Jessica in Jordan

Jessica is working for the National Center for Policy Analysis’ debate institute, “Debate Central.” The NCPA will be holding a debate camp in Amman, Jordan, along with General Tommy Franks, The King’s Academy and Oklahoma Christian University’s Institute for Leadership and Liberty. Jessica travels to Jordan in July to instruct debate and public speaking with the camp, as well as educate the students there on the debate topic, which addresses the Middle East peace process. Jessica also is serving as managing editor of the White Rock Lake Weekly, a Dallas-area newspaper whose editor-in-chief is an SMU graduate

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Early culture shock

I am getting ready to leave Oklahoma Christian University to head to Chicago so I can hop on a plane to Amman. The American students going with us just went through cultural training, and I think a lot of them are overwhelmed. Many of the students are homeschooled, so this is very much out of their comfort zone. When they were told that speaking about Christianity in public is illegal, there was a bit of a stir. I feel like they will probably get used to it quickly, but they are really uncomfortable about it now.

I have gotten several different stories about what is and is not ok for me to wear, so I’m hoping that my jeans, t-shirt and scarf are all right for when I get off the plane in Amman. We’ll see!

I’ll be spending the next 24 hours on several different planes and preparing to teach these kids about peace in the Middle East, which is intimidating. I have hundreds of pages of information on everything I need to know, and I’ve been studying this for months, but for some reason I am still unprepared to teach students about the Middle East Peace Process while I am in the Middle East. But hey, maybe this will help me in my international relations class I’m taking in the fall!

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