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Former Student Named Time Magazine's Person Of The Year

by Office of Marketing | Dec 12, 2014
Katie Meyler for Time
Thirty-two-year-old Katie Meyler, a former student of the University of Valley Forge, is among one of Time magazine's Person of the Year honorees for 2014. Among those honored are five categories of Ebola fighters: caregivers, directors, doctors, nurses and scientists. Meyler is a caregiver. She is a volunteer Ebola fighter, using her available resources to help contain and stop the epidemic. The University of Valley Forge had the opportunity to speak to Meyler through a live Skype call on Nov. 17 when she shared the current challenges in Liberia and the need for action in spite of fear, during this time of crisis.

Meyler is from Bernardsville, N.J., and attended the University of Valley Forge as a college freshman during the 2003–2004 academic year. While at the University of Valley Forge, she was involved with the homeless ministry and other outreach ministries. She said her time at the University of Valley Forge encouraged her to mature and see a world that was much larger than her own.

After college, Meyler traveled to Liberia to help run an adult literacy program in a remote village. Once there, Meyler saw the positive effect she could have in the education system in Liberia and decided to stay. In 2009, she founded More Than Me, a nonprofit organization dedicated to improve the education opportunities for girls in West Point, a slum of the Liberian capital Monrovia. In 2013, she opened the More Than Me Academy, which offers free education to school-aged girls. When the Ebola outbreak was confirmed in West Point on Aug. 12, 2014, the mission of More Than Me shifted its focus to keep the girls of West Point protected from the Ebola virus. Meyler began to work directly on the front lines with Ebola victims and the orphaned children left in the wake of the epidemic.  

The More Than Me Academy was converted into a Housing Observation and Pediatric Evaluation (HOPE) building for young girls recently orphaned and left homeless by the virus who are undergoing evaluation for Ebola symptoms. The organization was also able to purchase a community ambulance to transport victims to treatment centers. Meyler has chosen to stay in Liberia and fight this epidemic until it is defeated. 

Time magazine has published a person of the year issue since 1928, highlighting an individual or group of individuals who significantly impacted the global community. The Ebola fighters highlighted in this issue have risked everything to stand up for humanity and bring hope. 

To read more, visit these magazine links:
time.com/time-person-of-the-year-ebola-fighters
time.com/time-person-of-the-year-ebola-caregivers
charismanews.com/culture/46458-meet-the-woman-on-the-front-lines-of-africa