María knew the love for Moroccan culture when she made an exchange program at high school. This experience inspired her to start learning Arabic and studying Translation and Interpreting in Granada, Spain. She has also studied abroad two years: she stayed a year in France and one year in Tangier. Now she lives in Morocco and cannot imagine herself not bargaining when shopping or not drinking green tea with mint everyday! She loves sharing her experience with others and encouraging going deeper in the Arab and Muslim culture to remove those Occidental stereotypes that frighten people from this wonderful culture. As a language and cultural exchange lover, María speaks Spanish, English, French and classical and Moroccan Arabic and wishing to add more!
Mark has loved Morocco and the Sahara since first visiting the country in 2009. Mark joined the Peace Corps in 2013 as a youth development volunteer in Morocco, serving in a small town on the edge of the Sahara Desert. He has a passion for the entire North Africa region and for all things Moroccan, from mint tea to couscous. Mark is from Minneapolis, Minnesota. He has a BA in Political Science as well as a MA in International Affairs from American University. In his career, he has worked to bolster youth empowerment and community development priorities. Mark speaks French and Moroccan Arabic, and he tries to emulate the boundless optimism and warm hospitality of the Moroccan people.
Noor Darwazeh grew up between the middle east and the United States which opened her eyes to see the world differently from a young age. While studying abroad to get her BA in Graphic Design, she got into the field of inter-cultural work and education which instantly became her second passion, after working with different organizations Noor joined Crossing Borders Education in 2012, and in 2015 decided to move to Morocco which has been one of the most enriching experiences of her life, among many things she believes in the power of seeking common ground and celebrating diversity while enjoying a cup of sweet mint tea.
THOMAS DUNCAN is from Rockville, Maryland and has spent the last three and a half years living in Morocco. After graduating from Elon University with a degree in English, he joined the Peace Corps, spending two years in a small Saharan village in southern Morocco called Tagounite, and finishing his service in the desert city of Ouarzazate, becoming proficient in Moroccan Arabic during that time period. Thomas’ efforts during his Peace Corps service focused on professional development for women’s associations and cooperatives in the rural region he lived in, as well as music education and becoming immersed in the arts community around Morocco. He finished his service in May of 2016. Thomas has since helped found two Moroccan NGOs to continue his development work in the Saharan region of the country. He hopes to share his love of Morocco and Moroccan culture with those visiting through Morocco Exchange.