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Global Guides

Join the Global Guides Office Hours either in-person or virtually to hear more about Learning Abroad! 
Link on virtual office hours on our events page

What are Global Guides?

Global Guides serve as ambassadors for Learning Abroad at on-campus events, mentor fellow students on learning abroad program opportunities, and assist with office events and initiatives. The Global Guides have either lived abroad or have participated in a learning abroad program in the past. They are an excellent resource for students who aren’t sure how to decide on a program or who want first-hand information about a particular program or geographical location.

Global Guides are required to hold office hours every other week and attend monthly meetings, help at the Fall and Spring fairs and pre-fair tabling, do two classroom presentations per semester, and help at one additional Learning Abroad or Global Guide event per month. These positions are on a volunteer basis, and students seeking benefits such as personal and professional development and office experience are encouraged to apply.

Global Guides applications for the 2022-2023 academic year are now open! Click here to access the application. Applications are due Friday, June 17th, 2022 at 11:45 p.m. CDT.

Global Guides Biographies

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Hana M., Co-Lead Global Guide

Major:  Psychology 
Minor: Medicine and Society, Biology 
Class Year: Senior
Learning Abroad Program: CIEE Frederick Douglass Fellowship to Ireland, summer 2021
International Experience:  Ireland, Dubai

I believe that the study abroad experience is crucial to understanding the dynamics of different societies and cultures. In order to offer optimal aid in any field of study, one should be able to take into account the people and identities that will be affected. I decided to dedicate my career to fighting against underrepresentation and the low quality of care reserved for minority populations by engaging in a field that I am already passionate about: healthcare. I learned about the health deficits that factor in and I now understand that as an insider to the healthcare system, the minority lifestyle, and the large middle-class population, I have a steady hand in my ability to make a difference. That being said, the learning never stops. The new frame of reference I am able to reflect on from studying abroad is one of the most valuable takeaways. There is a world outside of my own that exposes us to values, cultures, and ideas different from our own. For one, we can confront our personal biases and challenge ourselves-- especially as first-generation minority students living in the US like me

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Melissa Q., Co-Lead Global Guide

Major: Management Information Systems
Class Year: Junior
Learning Abroad Program: TBA     
International Experience: Mexico

Learning abroad provides so many opportunities to learn and grow personally and professionally. Experiencing a foreign environment would improve my problem-solving skills to learn and adapt to different situations. Traveling increases my confidence in communicating with others and across language barriers. Being able to interact with a different culture enables a further understanding in the uniqueness of our identities. I would be able to encounter the diverse processes in the way education is taught, how businesses operate, and local interactions among people. We all have distinct cultural values and it is important to learn to be respectful to one another. Learning abroad would allow me to be more open-minded on various perspectives, thought processes, and ideas. 

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Jessica O.

Major:  Finance
Class Year: Junior
Learning Abroad Program:  Academic Year at Seoul, South Korea with USAC
International Experience: Mexico
Office Hours: Tuesdays, 11am-12pm

Studying abroad has been an experience that has profoundly affected me in both my personal and professional life. Living abroad is a challenging experience that I think I could have never received if I had stayed within the country. Past language barriers and cultural differences, you get to learn more about yourself and the world we share with so many others. The experience of living in a completely different country to yours and immersing yourself in the culture is a once -in- the -lifetime experience that I hope everyone tries!

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Angeline P.

Major:  Finance and Marketing
Minors: Spanish, Phronesis
Class Year:  Junior
Learning Abroad Program: Fall 2021 with AIFS in Barcelona, Spain
International Experience:  France, Portugal, Morocco, Netherlands, Switzerland, Andorra, Czech Republic, Hungary, Germany, Italy, Vatican City, Japan, China, Thailand, Singapore, Taiwan
Office Hours: Tuesdays, 11am-12pm

Studying abroad was a phenomenal experience. Due to the pandemic, I was unsure if I was even able to go but my efforts proved fruitful. Over the course of 4 months, I made friends from all over the world and shared commonalities across cultures. I improved my Spanish and developed a deep bond with my host family, who I now regard as my "family in Barcelona". I travelled to different countries in Europe frequently, becoming more independent and taking charge of how I valued my time. I made an effort to put myself out there, both academically and socially. I gained confidence to voice my thoughts and opinions in class among students from different cultures and differing perspectives than my own. Outside of class, I dedicated more time to getting to know my fellow international students and exploring Barcelona together. Now that I'm back, I want to give my time and share my experience with students who are interested in learning abroad. My biggest advice for students is to just go for it. You never know what lies ahead until you jump right in!  

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Sophia Z.

Major:   Political Science
Minors: 
National Security
Class Year:  
Junior
Learning Abroad Program:
SIT: International Studies and Multilateral Diplomacy in Geneva Switzerland
International Experience: 
UK/ Scotland, France (Nice, Paris) Como Italy, Vienna Austria
Office Hours: Wednesdays, 11am-12pm

Through Learning Abroad, I have been able to do write and learn about a variety of topics related to international relations I wouldn’t get in a normal academic setting. The highlight was being able to meet new friends, try new things, and experience a variety of cultures. Studying aboard gives you the opportunity to learn more about yourself by letting you be more independent and find your passions. It opens you up to a whole new world. Overall studying aboard has opened my eyes to new possibilities and I can’t wait to travel more in the future

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Ngoc N.

Major: Biochemistry
Minor: Chemistry 
Class Year: Senior
Learning Abroad Program: Semester in Swansea, Wales; Reciprocal Educational Exchange Program (REEP).    
International Experience: Vietnam, Australia, Spain, Mexico, United Kingdom, South Korea, Japan, Singapore
Office Hours: Wednesdays, 11am-12pm

Studying abroad has enhanced many aspects of my life. I was allowed the opportunity to academically explore different approaches to the subjects of my chosen major, from hands-on techniques in laboratory, to in-person exchange among study groups with peers and professors. It was fascinating to see other countries’ educational landscapes. Learning abroad also encouraged me to become more independent and responsible, but to never forget about having fun and enjoying the distinctive cultures and ways of life along the journey. I made many beautiful memories and new friends during my trip, and I will always keep the experience close to my heart. 

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Natalie S.

Major:  Computer Science
Minor: Mathematics 
Class Year: Junior
Learning Abroad Program:  None yet.
International Experience:  Dominican Republic, Panama, and Mexico.
Office Hours: Wednesdays, 12-1pm

Studying abroad will broaden my perspective on the world we live in and allow me to grow intellectually. It will expand my view because each country has its philosophies that contribute to its unique customs and traditions. Experiencing the dynamic interaction of another country and partaking in their principles is reforming. Considering that America is highly diverse, attaining international awareness may provide a better understanding of Americans. Moreover, studying abroad is an excellent opportunity to obtain global and social skills. 

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Xavier Z. V.

Major: History
Class Year: 2023
Learning Abroad Program: Currently abroad in Seville, Spain with ISA for Spring 2022 Semester     
International Experience: Mexico, Jamaica, Grand Cayman, Turks and Caicos Islands
Office Hours: N/A

How do I know that I’m ready for this? That’s the thing; I don’t. It’s a leap of faith. By taking this leap of faith I will grow and change as a person for the better. Learning Abroad will be a life-changing experience. I have no doubt in my mind that I will face challenges but that is one of the biggest reasons as to why I want to go abroad. I believe that this experience will help me grow and teach me how to become independent. It will teach me to fend for myself and to depend on my own judgement. I would love to help you – the undecided, risk taking student – take that leap of faith into wanting to go abroad. 

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Tristan T.

Major:  Economics & Political Science
Minor: National Security Studies 
Class Year: Senior
Learning Abroad Program:  Year Abroad in Swansea, Wales - REEP Program
International Experience:  France, Greece, The Grenadines, United Kingdom, Trinidad & Tobago
Office Hours: Tuesdays, 12-1pm

Learning abroad was such a great experience; I learned a lot about the aspects of travel and the healthcare climate in another country! The year I spent abroad in Wales furthered my skills in patience, problem solving, and resilience. 

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Isidora (Izzy) P.N.

Major:  Kinesiology and Psychology 
Class Year: Senior
Learning Abroad Program:  Greece with AIFS for Winter Program, January 2022
International Experience:  Originally from Chile, traveled to Brazil, Uruguay, Venezuela, Mexico, Panama, Costa Rica, Italy, Germany, Switzerland, and Austria
Office Hours: N/A

I think studying abroad will have a great impact on my life because it will give me the chance to get to know other cultures and people from other places with different life experiences and views than mine. I am big on cultural immersion experiences, so that is what I am looking forward to the most! 

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Austin F.

Major: Chemical Engineering
Minor: National Security Studies
Class Year: Sophomore
Learning Abroad Program: Galapago!    
International Experience: Ecuador, Colombia, Peru, El Salvador, Mexico
Office Hours: Wednesdays, 11am-12pm

Like many students, I wasn't sure I was ever going to be able to navigate the process or even afford to go study in a different country. The learning abroad office guided me through everything I needed, and were even able to help me again a Gilman scholarship in order to research abroad. Making new connections, whether professional or social, was incredibly valuable. It inspired me to try to really excel in my studies and dramatically increased my confidence and ability to speak to professors, recruiters/interviewers, and even other students. I plan to pay it forward and help students reach new goals the same way the learning abroad office helped me achieve things I didn't even know were possible. 

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Sam S.

Major: Finance
Class Year: Senior
Learning Abroad Program: Accelerated semester in Bilbao, Spain Spring 2022 with USAC; Affiliated Program    
International Experience: England, France, Germany, Austria, Italy, Switzerland, Liechtenstein, Belize
Office Hours: Wednesdays, 12-1pm

Traveling abroad is an awesome experience that can enhance your personal, professional, and academic growth. I was fortunate enough to be a part of a music abroad program in high school, traveling to 7 different countries across Europe in a 2 week span. I am looking forward to studying in Spain next semester where I will be able to broaden my global business understanding, by seeing firsthand how business fundamentals and strategies are taught in another country. I would encourage anyone who has thought about studying abroad to start looking for a program that best suits their interests, because there's an awesome opportunity out there for everyone.