Come and meet our Study Abroad Peer Mentors!  They have all participated in a study abroad program and can help guide you through the decision-making process as well as share any tips about making the most of your experience abroad.

Kelsey Wong

Name: Kelsey Wong (Lead Peer Mentor)
Major: International Area Studies
Minor: French
Class Standing: Junior
Study Abroad Location: Aix-en-Provence, France

What was the highlight of your study abroad experience?

One of the highlights of my study abroad in the south of France was the friendships I made. It was a joy to finally put my French into practice in everyday life from discussing politics with my host mom, to talking with my friends, to ordering food in a restaurant. Finally, the delicious food is no joke, it's absolutely marvelous! I had the best macarons while in Paris, and I never regretted treating myself to a nice meal while abroad.

What would you have liked to know before you studied abroad?

It's important to realize that everything is a teaching moment that you can grow from. I sometimes found myself struggling in situations such as a language barrier. As a French minor, I wish I could have put myself out there more to speak French. I think learning new languages is a challenging but rewarding task while abroad.

Name: Annie Holland
Major: Sociology 
Class Standing: Junior
Study Abroad Location: Cape Town, South Africa 

What was the highlight of your study abroad experience?

One of the highlights of my study abroad in the Cape Town the friendships I made. I was happy to be able to meet people who wanted to adventure into the nature of the Cape Town area and also people who wanted to volunteer and communicate with the locals. I loved being able to live with two local students as well as a girl from my program. This allowed for me to get the full experience. Before going to South Africa I had no idea what the culture was like. But, once I was able to immerse myself, the food helped me to get an idea of the culture. Cape Town's food is influenced by Indian or Cape Malay food, DELICIOUS!

What would you have liked to know before you studied abroad?

I would have liked to know more about the surrounding suburb that I was living in and also more about the University of Cape Town. Since the university is so large, I felt overwhelmed when I first got there and would have liked a little more of an introduction


Name: Jonathan O’Connor
Major: International Business
Minor: Economics
Class Standing: Junior
Study Abroad Location: Dublin, Ireland
What was the highlight of your study abroad experience?

Being able to join clubs and society’s that made it easier to adjust. By joining these I was able to meet people right away and they ended up being some of the best friends I made while in Ireland. When people are going over I would highly suggest join a couple clubs! Besides just meeting people some of these clubs can help you travel around the country or more of Europe. My club just traveled around Ireland, but my friend in the snowboarding club was able to go to Switzerland for 10 days!

What do you wish you could have known before you studied abroad?

Make sure that you prepare for all types of weather you will experience. In some of these countries, especially Ireland, you can go from sunshine and warm weather to rain in a day. Just remember it is for four months and clothes are a lot more expensive out there.

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