Faaris Muhammad


Faaris MuhammadFaaris Muhammad describes himself as bubbly, outgoing, nice, and kind. When we chatted with him about his experiences as a member of the Education First (EF) International Tour Guide program, he displayed all of those qualities and more! Before joining EF, an organization that designs traveling tours for students using experiential learning, he attended Girard Academic Music Program (GAMP) High School. While at GAMP, he was diagnosed with ADD and a processing disorder, and although he performed extremely well on tests (crediting RBCS for preparing him), he often struggled with his homework. Following graduation, Faaris set out to raise the funds needed to participate in EF’s six-month program. To prepare, he worked at Infinity Live and crafted an essay and application requesting a scholarship for the program, and a generous Byerschool Foundation donor made his dream come true

Faaris joined EF’s International Tour Guide program with a group of 90 students separated into cohorts of 30. He shared how relationships with members of his cohort, who hailed from around the world, will be lasting and were life changing. Following a two-day orientation in Boston, the group toured Paris and then participated in six weeks of intense training in Barcelona, which included Spanish-language immersion supported by living with a host family who spoke only Spanish. The following six weeks were spent in Costa Rica tagging sea turtles, renovating a school, and engaging with the community through gardening and planting mango trees. Following a quick stop to the Galapagos Islands, Faaris then headed to Ecuador to learn more about sea creatures and joined in local customs by sampling guinea pig and llama, truly learning the culture!

Following his experiences in Central and South America, Faaris’s travels continued to Stockholm, London and finally, six weeks in Seville where he worked as an intern with a social media and marketing firm for an English-language school. While there were bumps along the way related to COVID, getting pick-pocketed, and losing all his clothing (!!), Faaris had an extraordinary, transformative experience. Faaris Muhammad-Laurada Byers

Now home from his trek, Faaris hopes to continue to travel the world, and at 19 years old, he has plenty of time to achieve those dreams. To support his ambitions, he is currently working at the Philadelphia International Airport. He shared how RBCS instilled in him that he must be responsible for his own learning, and although he experienced some early trepidation and challenges related to his learning differences, he ultimately gained “overwhelming joy from this experience!” 

We look forward to following Faaris’s ongoing adventures!