Unique Story Series | Rachel’s Cross-Cultural Connection

Blog » Unique Story Series | Rachel’s Cross-Cultural Connection

In today’s Unique Story Series, we introduce – me! I’m Rachel Abani, Content Writer at ConnectEd. I’ve been on the team since November 2021, and I’ve loved every minute of it. ConnectEd dedicates all energy toward seeing students across India thriving in school. This endeavor is close to my own heart. 

I was born and raised in Traverse City, Michigan. A place that’s so beautiful in the summer, but frigid in the winter. I graduated from Michigan State University with a BA in Teaching French and English. My background in literature and education is what led me to content writing 4 years ago. 

Today, I’m based in Dubai, United Arab Emirates where I work most of the time as an English Language Instructor at an Australian University. I’m a teacher by training, but writing and education are my passions. In every season, I find myself storytelling, writing for my various schools’ newsletters, or developing new strategies for learning.

I have nearly 10 years of experience teaching language from grades one (five and six years old) to adults in university. I’ve worked on curriculum development for French and English departments, I’ve aided different schools’ marketing departments for their content creation, and all my professional experience has been cross-cultural. I have a passion for diversity.

My first cross-cultural experience was during my university years where I studied in France. I studied as a student in a local university, both language and francophone culture. I lived with a local woman, and I was fully immersed into the community. After my first experience abroad, I craved the thrill of learning new things from people different from me. This passion led me to Niger, West Africa right after I graduated from Michigan State University in the US. I stayed in Niger for four years, teaching in a expat school, then training local teachers, and teaching literacy to women in a rural village. After finishing my contract in Niger, I moved to Dubai where I began teaching English at a British business institution. 

Moving from Niger to Dubai was quite a shock for me – from the poorest of countries to the richest. Cross-cultural connections make any drastic transition easier, because you know you’re not alone. Over the past 4 years in Dubai, I’ve loved meeting new people, hearing their stories, and adjusting my own perspective to fit a more global environment.

More than anything, I believe my passion for education and cultures has made me a good fit at ConnectEd. We’re an international team based in the US, Dubai, and India. I’ve been so interested in learning more about Indian culture and curriculums that shape our students lives. Having such a diverse team of education, technology, and business experts has made us very well-rounded, offering a range of perspectives that support each aspect of our work. While we are a diverse team, ultimately we are after the same goal; to bring quality education to as many as possible throughout India. We’ve seen a disparity, and we’re working together to see this gap narrowed. 

We’re just getting started, and I’m eager to see where we go. I’m thrilled to be a part of it. I’m also keen to see how we can bring each of our perspectives to the work to ensure each student gets the attention they require.

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