Over the Atlantic Ocean and 8,273 miles away, Emma Williamson of Zambia, Africa, attends her Moraine Park Marketing and Social Media Management classes. Between acting in Zambia’s most popular local TV show, working for her family businesses and taking classes at Moraine Park, Williamson excels at the non-traditional student experience.
“I chose to pursue my education at Moraine Park because the College offered a completely online learning program, which is beneficial for me because it allows me to be flexible with my schedule and pursue my acting career while still getting my education,” Williamson said.
Williamson is originally from Louisville, Kentucky. In 2010, she moved to Lusaka, Zambia, with her family to be missionaries, but after their contract was up, they loved it too much to leave. She has lived in Zambia for 12 years with her parents and six siblings.
“The culture in Zambia is very different from the United States, but because I’ve lived here for so long, it is sometimes difficult to remember,” Williamson said. “One difference is that there is a much bigger focus on family relationships. Family obligations and duties take high priority in people’s lives here.”
By completing the Marketing and Social Media Management program, Williamson hopes to learn how to market her family’s businesses. Her father owns a woodworking business called Williamson Craftsmen, where they create hand-crafted furniture and home goods. Her mother runs a business called Megan’s Cakery, where they supply authentic tortilla chips and salsa, and frozen cookie dough and waffles to local stores.
“Unlike some common misconceptions about Africa, there are many developed areas like the capital city, Lusaka, where I live, that have businesses, movie theaters, coffee shops, hotels, malls and all the things you see in the United States,” Williamson said.
Williamson is focused on pursuing her acting career and hopes to learn how to market herself and develop her own personal brand. She is currently an actress on Zambia’s largest television show, Mpali, and is very passionate about creating dynamic social media content on Instagram, Facebook and TikTok @EmmaRoseZambia.
Read more stories like Emma’s in our Fall/Winter 2022 NEXT Magazine.