Maya Simmons, New Bern High School Student is selected as “People to People Student Ambassador”

Maya Simmons and Laura Johnson

Congratulations to Maya Simmons, New Bern High School student, for being accepted into the International “People to People Student Ambassador Program”! People to People is “the world’s most recognized and respected student travel program”. People to People International was founded by President Dwight D. Eisenhower in 1956.

Laura Johnson and I enjoyed meeting Maya and her Mother, Deirdra Simmons, to find out more about Maya and People to People’s program. Listen to Laura’s interview with Maya on WNOS Talk News 105.9FM or 1450AM:

Maya is only 15 years old and she a model student for others to emulate! One of her HJ MacDonald Middle School Teachers (who remains anonymous) recognized Maya’s remarkable talents and recommended her to become an Ambassador to travel abroad.

She’s maintained “straight A’s” throughout Middle School and was on the Volleyball Team, Drama Club, Advanced Chorus and Dance Team.

As a High School Freshman, she’s involved in the Future Business Leaders of America (FBLA) and the Drama Club.

Her passion for acting led to roles in local theatre to include the New Bern Civic Theatre and RiverTowne Players “Rising Stars”. Maya’s looking forward to her upcoming performance in “Honk Jr.”.

Studying French in school, it’s her favorite language and she’s really looking forward to learning more about the culture and people of France along with Greece and Italy.

The motto for People to People is “Peace through understanding”. Maya told us that she “will be staying with families and learning about different cultures”. Her goal is to visit these countries and “share our cultures with them and bring back some of their culture to create understanding that although we are different, we can come together to create peace and learn different things about each other”.

This isn’t a free trip so Maya and the Guildfield Missionary Baptist Church are organizing upcoming fundraisers to help pay for her travels beginning on June 20, 2013.

Stay tuned to New Bern Now as we will be in touch with Maya to help spread the word about her upcoming fundraisers and checking in with her when she gets back from her trip.

For more information please send an email to or if you would like to make a donation, make checks payable to Maya Simmons and mail to PO Box 3762, New Bern, NC  28564.

It was a pleasure meeting Maya and her Mother and we look forward to hearing more about this special program and Maya’s trip!

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Wendy Card