Vermont is known for its Green Mountains, changing of the seasons, maple syrup, small-town home affection, and tenderness toward people. However, growing up in Vermont 10 minutes from the Canadian border inevitably makes you siloed. This is especially true for me being from a hometown with less than 500 people, Island Pond. The town is named Island Pond because there’s an island literally in the middle of the lake. The summers were great because of all the water activities; fishing, boating, swimming, etc. At the same time, it was difficult to realize what else was out there in our world when I was ultimately a “fish in the pond.” Simply put, I didn’t know what I didn’t know. I wasn’t conveniently blessed with opportunities for exposure regarding different geographies, demographics, and especially culture. This all changed for me when I found National Life Group.