STUDY ABROAD ALUMNI STORY
STUDY ABROAD ALUMNI STORY
Why did you decide to study abroad?
In high school, I always had the aspiration to travel abroad but lacked the financial funding. Once I was in college, I spent months looking for scholarships and frequented the study abroad office often. With the help of my study abroad office and scholarships, I was able to study abroad twice while in college.
Tell us about the program you went on
I participated in Global Semester’s Summer in Cyprus: AnimalScience program in the summer of 2014. I also studied abroad in China for two weeks through Xavier University of Louisiana’s Confucius Institute in 2015.
How did you pay for your study abroad experience?
I fully funded my Cyprus experience through the Gilman Scholarship, and I paid for my China experience through a full student scholarship offered by my university.
What is one thing you wish you would have known about studying abroad before you left?
With both experiences, I wished I had exchanged my currency in the U.S. rather than doing it overseas.
Did you experience any discrimination abroad because of your race, sex, religion, sexual orientation or a physical disability? If so, what did you learn from the experience?
No, I did not experience any discrimination. Although while abroad, most people did not believe that I was from America and were convinced that I was from an African country. I didn’t really mind people believing I was African, most of the time I did not have the energy to correct them.
How has studying abroad benefited you, personally and academically?
Studying abroad really helped me stand out as a dental school applicant. When I was conducting interviews at various schools, I was always asked about my study abroad experiences. I believe studying abroad gave me an advantage over other applicants.
What was the most memorable moment of studying abroad?
My most memorable moments while abroad were swimming in the Mediterranean sea, climbing the Great Wall of China, and visiting the pyramids of Egypt!
In what way do you feel your experience abroad has prepared you for your future career? (Think both tangible things like language acquisition and intangible like learning to work with people who are very different from you)
As a future dentist, studying abroad has taught me cultural competency, which will greatly help me to relate and be sensitive to the various needs of my patients.
Would you recommend the program you went on, if so why??
Yes, both programs allowed us free roaming time and scheduled great overnight excursions and trips. The Global semesters program was extremely great because I was able to earn biology credits that went toward my graduation requirements.
What advice do you have for students thinking about study abroad?
I would highly recommend going to neighboring countries while abroad.
Author: Nia Beasley