In 1962, a newly-minted college graduate answered the call of President John F. Kennedy and joined the fledgling Peace Corps. Leslie Noyes Mass was assigned to Pakistan and given the directive to start a program-any kind of educational program she could muster-in a small Muslim village where she was the only Westerner and the only Peace Corps volunteer. After a year, she left the village, frustrated and feeling that she had made no impact at all.
Nearly 50 years later, she returned to discover a much-changed Pakistan-and a village that still remembers her. She tells both her stories, from 1962 and today, by deftly interweaving her journal entries from 50 years ago with her current day story as a volunteer training female teachers for a Pakistani non-governmental institution. Leslie Mass captures the heart and the attention of the reader with her story of Pakistanis in 1962 and those of a new generation who are engaged in building a sustainable education system for their country's forgotten children. In a series of interviews with Pakistanis from every social class and educational level, Dr. Mass gives voice to those who are taking responsibility for their country's educational problems and solving these problems within the traditions, culture, and religious understanding of their people. Back to Pakistan: A Fifty-Year Journey is a compelling look into a country as it goes from its infancy into the 21st century.