Sarah Messner

Printeton Bridge Year On-Site Director, India

A.B., Dartmouth College: English with Creative Writing
Graduate Certificate, School for International Training: Conflict Transformation Across Cultures
M.Div., Princeton Theological Seminary

Born and raised in Southern California, Sarah is drawn to rugged mountains and pilgrim roads, especially when accompanied by good friends and a book tucked in her pack. Sarah first traveled to India in 2006 with a Dragons-sponsored group, and knew she would return.

In college, Sarah studied Creative Writing with an emphasis on environmental nonfiction. She helped manage her school’s organic farm, studied Spanish language and culture at the Universidad Autónoma de Madrid, and lived in Tegúcigalpa, Honduras. After graduation, Sarah received a fellowship to study sustainable agriculture and social justice in rural New England communities. She worked as a campus minister at Dartmouth, and an environmental educator at the Hulbert Outdoor Center in Fairlee, Vermont.

In 2007, Sarah moved to Rwinkwavu, Rwanda, to work with Partners in Health, where she helped develop an agricultural research center and assistance program to address systemic malnutrition. She recently completed a Masters of Divinity at Princeton Seminary, where she studied the intersection of religious cosmologies, environmental issues, and health. As part of her masters research, Sarah studied agriculture, religion, and climate change in Ladakh and Dehradun, India. A Kripalu-certified yoga instructor, Sarah especially loves to practice and play in the mountains. She has led high school summer programs with Putney Student Travel, including public health in Rwanda, and sustainable development in India. Her love of long trails has inspired her to walk across Spain on the Camino de Santiago, traverse the Sierra Nevada mountains on the John Muir Trail, explore the Kanchenjunga range in Sikkim, flee from midges on the West Highland Way in Scotland, and section-hike through Oregon and Washington on the Pacific Crest Trail. Sarah is also an avid birdwatcher, and can be found scouting the forests near her home in North Carolina, binoculars in hand.