Saturday, March 26, 2011

SMHS alumni study abroad around world

Three 2007 SMHS graduates took advantage of their universities' study abroad programs and traveled various countries around the world. Each one of them embraced another cultures, and each arrived home a different person.Clarissa Dodge visited to Amman, Jordan, located in Western Asia, for five weeks during the summer before her sophomore year of college.Dodge fell in love with the Arabic language during her time at Arizona State Univeristy and decided to study abroad to learn first-hand about Middle Eastern culture. She took every opportunity to experience something new while she was there and while she immersed herself in a new culture, she also learned new things about herself.I got to see the River of Jordan, Petra, and Wadi Rum... I ate lamb brains. it tasted like eggs and I liked it until I saw a vein and then I thought I was going to be sick,Dodge said in an email. Jordan completely changed my career path and probably the rest of my life. It made me more compassionate, understanding, educated.I could go on and on.Study abroad in Germany.

Jordan wasn't all fun and games for Dodge; sometimes she had to stick to her guns and get serious.It is basically ingrained in Egyptian culture to cat call. I got really sick of old men making kissing noises at me and calling me Angelina Jolie,Dodge said.Finally, someone taught me to say off in Arabic and it was surprisingly useful.For her sophomore year, Samantha Hauser spent her time studying at the University of Leeds in England and working in Scotland during the summer.
There is a difference between the study abroad program and exchange program,Hauser said. The cool thing with doing the exchange program was I still paid my tuition to ASU and the girl who took my spot [paid] tuition to her university and we just swapped.Attending college gave Hauser the confidence to attempt to travel to an unknown country, where everyone is a stranger.Students can also get a lot of exposure while studying in such universities and different course Engineering,Materials Science and Master in Photonics.

I decided to study abroad because I think that going to college gave me more confidence and independence,Hauser said.Honestly, it changed my life. It changes your perception on life and it gives you more independence.Kallie Nauertz traveled to Spain for her fall semester of her senior year. She decided on it because of her love for traveling and the Spanish language.My favorite part of studying abroad was experiencing new cultures and traveling on the weekends,Nauertz said in an email. I had the privilege to travel around Spain and to London and Dublin.All three enjoyed their time abroad but the financial aspect of traveling to a different country took its toll. Although finances, of course, were a little hard, none of them let it hold them back.It cost me substantially more money to study abroad. Many of the scholarships I have are not applicable to the study abroad program,Nauertz said.But do not let money stop you from traveling abroad. If you want to do something, go for it. The funds are out there you just have to find them.

Some advice Hauser gave to future travelers was to, make as many friends as you can and don’t take yourself too seriously, because.Europeans have a lot of interesting ideas about Americans so it’s hard, as an American, to listen to people make fun of your country.Clarissa Dodge graduated from ASU with a degree in Journalism and certificate in Arabic Studies. She has been accepted into the Peace Corps and hopes to be placed in Jordan doing community development but has postponed her leave date to attend graduate school. She will study International Development, Foreign Service or International Affairs, depending on where she gets accepted.Kallie Nauertz is a senior at NAU and is getting her degree in Hotel and Restaurant Management with a minor in Business and Spanish.Samantha Hauser is a senior at ASU and is majoring in Journalism. She has already started applying for jobs in San Francisco and New York.

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