Traveler of the Month – Renee Smith


Renee in Rome

We are proud to announce our first November Traveler of the MonthRenee Smith! Renee has traveled extensively in Europe with Travel for Teens, going from doing community service work in Sicily to the Scottish Highlands and just about everywhere in between. 


As you can see from Renee’s own words below, she is an avid traveler who has come to understand the secret of traveling – the journey doesn’t end when you return home. It is a true pleasure to have Renee as a fellow traveler because of her constantly sunny disposition and incredible ability to make friends with everybody she meets. Congratulations Renee!

Here is what Renee has to say about her Travel for Teens experience: 

“Two summers ago I started on an unknown journey to explore Europe with TFT, and two summers ago, I fell in love with traveling.  Since then, I have had the privilege of spending two amazing summers with the counselors, CIT’s and other campers from around the globe discovering the wonders of the world around us.  

Renee doing service work in Sicily
From Sicily to London, Munich to Scotland, from my life as an American teenager to an explorer of foreign culture, food, and people, my life has completely changed.  Traveling with TFT has influenced my way of thinking, my passions, and even the topic of my college essay.  TFT has opened my eyes to so many beautiful places and has helped me embrace every experience of every place that I am in, whether that means listening to a live jazz concert while twilight sets in over the Mediterranean Sea or trying to  figure out the bizarre bathrooms at a ropes course in Switzerland.  

Traveling with TFT has taught me that an adventurous spirit, the readiness to laugh in any situation and a willingness to meet new people are important not only when traveling, but also in everyday life.  For instance, holding a live sea creature at an Italian fish market takes the same adventurous spirit as trying lazer tag for the first time with your friends.  Wiping out while running down the side of Europe’s largest active volcano requires the same ability to laugh at a situation as spilling spaghetti on your white shirt would.  Conversing with people in foreign countries who don’t speak the same language as you takes the same willingness to meet new people as would walking across the street and introducing yourself to your new neighbors.  

While all of these are crucial points to being a traveler, the most important thing I have realized is that “traveling” doesn’t end on the plane ride home.  Nor does it end when all the pictures are up on Facebook, the seasons begin to change, and the school year starts.  The truth is, traveling never ends, and TFT has helped me realize that.  Even though it was two long summers ago that I started my travels with TFT, the lessons I learned and the valuable experiences I gained will help me forever to live my constant journey and love every minute of it.”

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