Clarkie of the Week: Sara Davidow

Sara Davidow (‘17) from Montclair, N.J. is an International Development and Social Change major with a concentration in Education and a minor in Women’s and Gender Studies. She is an Resident Advisor (RA), the president of Hillel, and loves tag saling.

Photo taken by Jonathan Edelman
Photo taken by Jonathan Edelman

Scarlet: What are you involved with on campus?

Sara: I’m an RA in Wright Hall. Third floor represent! That takes up a lot of my time. I work in admissions. I’m the President of ClarkU Hillel, which is a great group, I love us. My term ends in three weeks, which is sad, because our term runs from January to December. I’m studying abroad next semester, actually. I’m going to Cape Town, South Africa, so I won’t be running again.

 

Scarlet: What made you choose South Africa?

Sara: So I visited South Africa when I was 13 on a trip with my grandparents. It was a bat mitzvah present, actually. A very cool bat mitzvah present. They very much believe in experiences as gifts. They also believe that their time is very limited, so when I asked to go to Europe they said no because they had already been there before. The trip itself was a lot of me following them around, so after the trip I had a really weird view of South Africa. Back then I didn’t really understand apartheid, and I really didn’t understand hate. In high school and in college I started to do a lot of independent research on South Africa. Then, in conjunction with the Educational Policy in Developing Countries course with Professor Nigel Brissett, I really got involved with the South African education system. Which, fun fact, was actually developed in 1996. You think of education as this time-honored tradition, but this one is only two decades old. So it has a lot of things it needs to work out, like many education systems. But I was just really intrigued of how they’re going about it, and more specifically, what girls’ education looks like. So all of those connections lead me to choose going to South Africa. It will be cool to see first hand all of the research I’ve been doing, and to see what substantial change I can make.

 

Scarlet: Any fun facts about yourself?

Sara: Two fun facts, one goes hand-in-hand with the South Africa story. The bat mitzvah present included a safari while we were there. During the ride, our tour guide noticed an abandoned baby elephant, so we called for help and got it to a place where it could be rehabilitated. I ultimately wound up donating my bat mitzvah money and sponsoring the elephant, so I can now say I sponsored an elephant. I named him Emmett and they kept the name! Another fun fact is I was a character on Dora the Explorer as a child. [laughs] I actually have an IMDb page.

 

Scarlet: How’d you get on Dora the Explorer?

Sara: Montclair is actually a pretty popular show business place. It’s a suburb of New York. So the creator was actually from my town, and that’s how I got the gig.

 

Scarlet: Do you have any hobbies outside of saving elephants and voicing cartoon characters?

Sara: I collect DVDs, and I go tag saling.

 

Scarlet: Tag saling? Tell me more about that.

Sara: Also known as garage saling, or yard saling. I’m making it a verb and it’s not a verb. [laughs] I’m a collector of quality junk. During the summer I would go to Craigslist and look up yard sales, and arrange them by distance. I’d drag my friends out at 7 a.m. on Saturdays and bring them to Dunkin’. We’d get a lot of great stuff and get to explore.

 

Scarlet: If you were a sandwich, what kind of sandwich would you be and why?

Sara: I immediately thought of all my favorite sandwiches, but I don’t think I could personify them…I would be Sylvia’s chicken sandwiches from the Kosher section. Because they are amazing and garlic-y, just like me.

 

Scarlet: I heard you took a gap year after high school, what did you do?

Sara: I went to Thailand! I actually started in Laos, working in a monastery teaching English. Then I backpacked around with friends I had met for a couple months after then. And then I got dengue fever and went home.

 

Scarlet: Is there anything else you would like to add? Any shoutouts?

Sara: Happy anniversary Mom and Dad, 29 years strong! Also, hi Bubby!

 

Thanks for the interview, Sara!