Alumni Feature – Betsy Nash, Class of 2011

After 7 years at Cape Henry, Betsy Nash graduated and began her adventure as a CHC alumnus. Betsy attended Cape Henry from her first day of middle school to her last day of high school. During her time at CHC, Betsy was extremely invested in the NEXUS program and shared that the program is every reason that she was prepared to reach for her traveling dreams. Through the NEXUS program, she traveled to Martinique in 2008, and Fiji in 2011 for her senior trip. “The trips really opened my eyes to cultures outside of my own and introduced me to sustainable development work and creating meaningful relationships with the people around me”. As she reflected back on her high school experience, Betsy remembers fondly how her teachers became her friends, winning field hockey state championships, and NEXUS trips. “Looking back, I think high schools was one of my favorite times.”

Directly following her time at Cape Henry, Betsy attended East Carolina University and Old Dominion University where she earned her Bachelor of Science degree in Sociology. While in college, she worked as a manager for the Cavalier Hotel and later worked at Urban Outfitters as a department manager for two years. In 2016, Betsy became certified as an English teacher in Cambodia and went on to teach in an orphanage for two months. Currently, Betsy is an active education volunteer in the US Peace Corps in Malawi. She is teaching English literature, language, and physical education. “The diversity of teaching styles and responsiveness of teachers to different learning styles at Cape Henry is something that has helped me as a teacher myself. It made me recognize that I need to diversify lessons, and really get to know my students. Also, the independence Cape Henry affords their students was something I think has allowed me to be successful working on my own in such an unfamiliar culture,” Betsy adds.

When she is not busy with teaching, Betsy leads meetings within her community covering topics such as gender equity, human rights, sexual/reproductive health and rights, and HIV/AIDS prevention and education. To add to her already decorated character, Betsy is also the National Coordinator for Grassroot soccer for Malawi’s Peace Corps. Grassroots soccer is a non-profit organization that focuses on covering important topics such as HIV/AIDS, gender equity, and malaria. The organization presents information while engaging in a fun game of soccer. Before beginning work in Malawi, Betsy has also volunteered for Habitat for Humanity and has traveled to Guatemala and Armenia on construction trips.

Betsy is living an amazing life, as she empowers and embraces people every day. As for now, she has not committed to a set future plan, but instead, she is keeping her opportunities open. She has officially committed to a third year in the Peace Corps and is planning to continue her impactful work for another year. Down the road, Betsy wants to return to school to graduate and earn her Master’s degree in social work. Following that, she has pondered the ideas of moving back to Malawi to continue her work in a higher sphere of development, or potentially look for an administrative or educator position in the Middle East or Africa in refugee camps. Betsy has even considered returning home and working for Cape Henry one day. For now, though, Betsy is enjoying precious time in Malawi, playing with her pet pig, hanging out with friends and neighbors, chatting, cooking, farming, eating, sewing, and playing soccer in her village.

Alexandra Land ‘19 is a senior journalist, athlete, and student at Cape Henry this year. She is passionate about field hockey and will continue her passion at James Madison University, where she hopes to pursue a career in Geriatric Cognitive studies. Alexandra is personally connected with alumnus Betsy Nash, through their shared passion for field hockey and their mutual family friendships.