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Peer Advisors

Peer advisors are study abroad alums who volunteer to share their experiences with students considering going abroad! Feel free to reach out to any PA who studied abroad somewhere you're interested in: 

Bianca Beaulieu, CIEE at Yonsei University in Seoul, South Korea
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Global Management major, Health Industries minor
Semester Abroad: Spring 2019
Questions? Email me: beaulie_bian@bentley.edu

Why do you think Bentley students should study abroad? 
Studying abroad for semester or for a year challenges you in many ways. Experiencing a culture that is different from yours makes you reevaluate your own thoughts and opinions. It gives you a wake-up call to what really matters. The world isn’t as small as you think. There are so many conversations to be held, people to meet, and delicious food to eat! Learning in a different environment helps you learn to adapt like in the professional world after graduation.

Jenna Caminiti, American College of Thessaloniki in Thessaloniki, Greece
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Management major with a concentration in Human Resources, minor in Global Studies
Semester Abroad: Fall 2019
Questions? Email me: caminit_jenn@bentley.edu

#1 piece of advice for students studying abroad:
Don’t stick to what you know. It is really easy when studying abroad to only spend time with other Bentley students you came with and only eat food you are familiar with. If you do that then you won’t get as much out of your experience as you could. Different cultures can be intimidating but also incredible. Letting yourself be immersed in another culture can teach students a great deal about where they are living and a great deal about themselves. I am exceptionally grateful that my program allowed me to meet people from all over Europe and built relationships with people that I otherwise wouldn’t have been able to meet.

Siyu Chen, RMIT University in Melbourne, Australia
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Major/Minor: Corporate Finance and Accounting, Health & Industry LSM
Semester Abroad: Fall 2018
Questions? Email me: chen_siyu@bentley.edu

What was your favorite local gem to go to?
“Let’s meet up in front of the state library.” I always felt excited when I received this message in Melbourne. I had a group chat, which included all new friends I made during the exchange students orientation. Despite they came from different countries and universities, we held the same purpose to explore the city and the country as many so possibility. Therefore, everyone shared what he or she found and enjoyed to provide information for others to experience. Some people shared interesting local events; other people shared touring plans to other cities. As a result, the state library, as our rendezvous, was my favorite place because going to the library meant I would meet friends, go to recommended event, finalize travel plans and experience something new.

Kelly Cheng, University of Hong Kong in Hong Kong
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Major/Minor: CIS/Management
Semester Abroad: Spring 2019
Questions? Email me: cheng_kell@bentley.edu

Why should Bentley students study abroad?
Bentley students should study abroad because it enhances people’s perspectives. It allows them to travel and attend school in a country they have never been before. Studying abroad forces people to come out of their comfort zones. Students will have to learn how to navigate unfamiliar environments and languages. Studying abroad isn’t always easy, but it does provide an opportunity to depend on oneself and grow. I found it helpful when I had to live alone and navigate my way throughout my internship. I wouldn’t have been able to be confident and independent living by myself without experiencing study abroad.  

Fabiana Clemente, CIEE Open Campus in Cape Town, South Africa and Rome, Italy
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Creative Industries major, Global Perspectives LSM

Semester abroad:  Fall 2019

Questions? Email me: clement_fabi@bentley.edu

Describe a skill you learned abroad.
I have been studying in the US for 3 years now, so in a way, I am already studying abroad and used to the challenges of it. Yet, during my semester abroad I learned that your mind controls your reality. Meaning that if you control your thoughts, they will guide your life towards where you wanted it to go. For example, if I would get up and start my day with a positive attitude and trying to control all the negative thoughts (which eventually come when you are in a new place and you begin comparing it to what you know, or when things get challenging or when culture shock becomes real), my day would go so much better than if I had allowed those destructive thoughts to come in an make a tend in my mind.

Sofia Escandon, IES in Buenos Aires, Argentina
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Managerial Economics major with a focus in Marketing, International Affairs minor

Semester abroad:  Fall 2019

Questions? Email me: escando_sofi@bentley.edu

Describe one of the most meaningful experiences you had abroad.
One of my most meaningful experiences abroad was travelling to Patagonia solo. This was very important for me because when I first arrived in Buenos Aires, I was too scared to ride the bus by myself, let alone go anywhere. By the end of my program, I planned a 5-day trip to hike Patagonia. The second most meaningful was living with a host family. I was able to develop a great relationship with my host mom, practice my Spanish every single day, eat home-made argentine food, and truly live in the city.

Kira Faugno, Lorenzo de' Medici Institute in Florence, Italy
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Corporate Finance and Accounting major

Semester abroad:  Fall 2019

Questions? Email me: faugno_kira@bentley.edu

Why do you think Bentley students should go abroad?
Going to a small school, studying abroad enlightened me to just how big the world really is. It’s easy to get caught up in the Bentley bubble, and while I am grateful to go to such a close knit university, I was able to meet numerous individuals who I never would have met before. These individuals taught me new things about myself and how to see things from a different perspective. Learning in a different environment outside of a Bentley classroom also allowed me to gain knowledge about more liberal topics in a refreshing way. These eye-opening experiences are why I think all Bentley students should study abroad.

Emma Gharibian, Bond University in Gold Coast, Australia
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Major/Minor: Corporate Finance and Accounting
Semester Abroad: Fall 2019
Questions? Email me: gharibi_emma@bentley.edu

Why should Bentley students study abroad?
Bentley’s study abroad program is an incredible opportunity for students to explore unfamiliar places, face new challenges, and gain independence. When I left the United States to study across the world, I was forced out of my comfort zone, which was both challenging and liberating. I was challenged to completely immerse myself in a foreign environment, while adapting to Australia’s unique foods, activities, and university life. Meanwhile, I was free to explore different destinations and meet people from all over the world. This experience allowed me to grow as an individual because I became more independent by being away from my friends and family. I also gained a new appreciation of my home country through listening to global perspectives.

Allison Gilkie, Leiden University in Leiden, Netherlands
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Corporate Finance and Accounting major

Semester abroad:  Fall 2019

Questions? Email me: schore_kath@bentley.edu

#1 piece of advice to Bentley students considering study abroad?
Look into the lifestyle of where you will be studying, particularly, beware of your modes of transportation. I had to bike everyday rain or shine, and I wish I knew this before going (would have brought a raincoat). If you are more comfortable living somewhere you walk mostly or a city that has lots of trains and buses, be aware before you choose your destination.

Sara Goodno, Leiden University in Leiden, Netherlands, and the Washington Center in Washington, D.C.
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Major/Minor: Public Policy and Business
Semesters Abroad: Fall 2018 and Spring 2019
Questions? Email me: goodno_sara@bentley.edu

#1 piece of advice for students studying abroad:
My number one piece of advice for studying abroad is take advantage of the little things! Wherever you go, there will be large tourist attractions, but the smaller interactions like going to the grocery store or talking to a local on the bus gives an incredibly valuable perspective on the daily lives of people in places around the world.

 

Sydney Jurczyszak, IES Abroad in Milan, Italy
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Major/Minor: Finance Major, Law Minor

Semester Abroad: Spring 2019

Questions? Email me: jurczys_sydn@bentley.edu

Why should Bentley students study abroad? 
Bentley students should study abroad because it is a unique, incredible experience that broadens your horizons and gives you a glimpse into the larger world around you. Traveling abroad makes you realize what you are capable of and makes you look beyond the Bentley Bubble. I loved studying abroad because I realized how many options are out there post-graduation, and it ignited a love for travel that I was never able to experience before.

Jacob Kalish, Lorenzo de' Medici Institute in Florence, Italy
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Economics-Finance Major in the BS/MS Finance program
Semester Abroad: Fall 2018
Questions? Email me: Kalish_jaco@bentley.edu

What was one of your most meaningful experiences and why?
One of the most meaningful experiences that I had was my first tour of Santa Croce Chruch. I ended up getting three versions of the tour, but the first one struck me the hardest. As we walked inside, I was amazed by how gigantic it was. Incredibly highly raised ceilings, pointed arches, stained glass windows, it was my first real experience of gothic church. I was blown away by the art – the crucifix by Donatello and Cimabue, and the emotional history of the devastating flood of 1966 that badly damaged much of the art. The most significant experience, however, was visiting the tombs of the most famous Florentines of all time. Buried in the church are great thinkers such as Galileo, polititions and philosophers such as Machiavelli, and of course one of the greatest artists and renaissance  men of all time, Michelangelo. Just being in the same building as their bodies, I was overwhelmed by the history flowing around me. Most of these men walked the same streets and visited the same churches that I was, and that was incredible.

Fatoumatta Kebbeh, ESADE Business School in Barcelona, Spain
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Major/Minor: B.S. in management with a concentration in global management. LSM in diversity & society. Minor in law
Semester Abroad: Fall 2018
Questions? Email me: kebbeh_fato@bentley.edu

#1 piece of abroad for students studying abroad:
My #1 piece for students studying abroad is put yourself first. It will help you make better decisions for yourself and it will force you to understand yourself better. Many people have a friend or two from their school that studies abroad with them. Usually, they do everything together and may become their own clique. However, it is okay to say no to plans if you want a day for yourself. It is okay to want to branch out and make new friends. It is okay to want to explore different parts of the city. It is okay to take a solo trip to a different city. By allowing yourself to put your demands first before anyone else’s, you will learn what makes you happy.

 

Erin Kelly, UCD in Dublin, Ireland
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Major/Minor: Actuarial Science
Semester Abroad: Fall 2019
Questions? Email me: kelly_erin@bentley.edu 

Most meaningful experience from studying abroad:
One of my most meaningful experiences came up a few times, and it would have to be traveling alone. Before going abroad, I would never consider going on a weekend trip alone… it seemed scary and a little lonely. However, the circumstances arose that I took 2 weekend trips around Ireland fully alone, and it was amazing! It was actually great to rely solely on myself to navigate to my destination, get myself to my activities, and keep my own company. Now I’m no longer afraid to step out of my comfort zone because I know I can handle it!

 

Tara King, Corvinus University in Budapest, Hungary
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Major/Minor: Marketing major with double minor in law and psychology
Semester Abroad: Fall 2018
Questions? Email me: king_tara@bentley.edu

What was one of your most meaningful experiences and why?
The most meaningful experiences I had were the opportunities given to me as a Gilman Scholar recipient. During my time in Hungary, I volunteered with EducationUSA and Fulbright Representatives in Hungary to give presentations to Hungarian High School students about the various secondary education opportunities that exists in America. During the presentations, I talked about my time at Bentley and the different activities that I was involved in on campus, and served as a peer advisor to them- giving advice on what tests, academic requirements, and extracurricular activities that colleges and universities expect from possible students. I was invited to events at the U.S. embassy in Hungary and I had the opportunity to meet with U.S. diplomats and other representatives during a Thanksgiving dinner event

Chantel Lewis, Al Akhawayn University in Ifrane, Morocco
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Major/Minor: English Major/ Business Studies and Human Resource Management Minor
Semester Abroad: Fall 2018
Questions? Email me: lewis_chan@bentley.edu

#1 piece of advice for students studying abroad:
My number one piece of advice for studying abroad is to scrap all expectations of the host country or school you’re going too. While this may seem harsh, I say this because the last thing you want to happen once your abroad is to allow your perceptions of what you think the country is to cloud the actuality of what it is. Going to Morocco, I thought I was going to have an abundance of couscous and see people riding camels constantly. In actuality, couscous was only served on Friday’s on campus- and the most camels I saw were in Marrakech- a city 6 hours away from the city I was in (Ifrane). I also thought that it would never reach below 50 degrees, but the nights in Ifrane dipped into the 30’s constantly. Therefore, go in with an absolute open mind and do as much research as possible. Especially about the city you’re going to- not just the country only.

Molly O'Sullivan, Bond University in Queensland, Austrailia
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Major/Minor: Accounting Major / IDCC Minor
Semester Abroad: Fall 2018
Questions? Email me: osulliv_moll@bentley.edu

#1 piece of advice for students studying abroad:
Try new things and have an open mind! There is so much opportunity and things waiting to be discovered surrounding you while studying abroad. Be outside as much as you possibly can and keep technology to a minimum. This is one of the last times you will have so much freedom with such little responsibility. Do not be afraid to travel alone, or travel with people you have just met, and completely immerse yourself into your environment. Everyone is in the same boat as you, so reach out and talk to the students around you and meet people in your classes, you may just come to find your new best friend.

Michael Podbelski, API in Barcelona, Spain
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Major: Accounting
Semester Abroad: Spring 2019
Email me: podbes_mich@bentley.edu

What was a typical day in the life while studying abroad? Who were you with and where did you go?
My typical day abroad divided between weekdays and weekends. Monday to Thursday consisted of waking up around 10am and I would usually be busy with school/chores until five or seven in the evening. It was nice because I was busy but certainly not overwhelmed. I usually traveled on the weekends, either on Thursday nights or on Friday mornings. I travelled on two program trips to Lisbon and Seville and traveled with friends to Mallorca and other parts of Spain, as well London, Amsterdam, the Amalfi Coast, Dublin, and Prague. Travel weekends usually consist early mornings and late nights. I rarely planned what I did on these trips and mostly winged it. I usually would come back Sunday mornings/afternoon to rest up for the following week.

Tiana Ramic, Lorenzo de' Medici in Florence, Italy
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Management major, Marketing minor
Semester Abroad: Fall 2018
Questions? Email me: ramic_tian@bentley.edu

Why should Bentley students study abroad?
Students should study abroad because it is an experience that both broadens their worldly perspective and builds character. When you live in a foreign country, you begin to question your own culture and understand that the world stretches beyond our “Bentley Bubble”. Learning to adapt to a completely foreign environment is a skill that students develop abroad and bring home with them; it makes any adjustment back in the United States comparably much easier. Studying abroad pushes students to reach out of your comfort zone, and this is how they learn the most.

Cyrene Ren, Audencia School of Management in Nantes, France
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Corporate Finance and Accounting major

Semesters abroad:  Spring 2019

Questions? Email me: ren_yufe@bentley.edu

What was a typical day in the life while studying abroad? Who were you with and where did you go?

I would wake up, grab a quick breakfast in the kitchen, and say goodbye to my host Sophie and her cute puppy Nell. I took the tram directly to school, about 40 minutes. I would meet up with my friends – from Belgium and Korea – and go to classes together. We’d eat lunch together in the school cafeteria, and sometimes we’d go to club activities hold by the international students’ association. After school, I’d usually go to the supermarket in the city center, it was on my way back home, very convenient. I’d usually buy one baguette to make a sandwich, any daily fruits on sale and some veggies. Sometimes I’d grab a kebab sandwich after I shopped, the kebab cafe owner was really sweet to me. I really liked my everyday school-supermarket routine; I didn’t realize how much I miss my Nantes days until I thought about it.

Kathryn Schore, WU-Wien in Vienna, Austria
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Accounting major

Semester abroad:  Fall 2019

Questions? Email me: schore_kath@bentley.edu

#1 piece of advice to Bentley students considering study abroad?
Go into the experience with an open mind! This applies to many aspects. Don’t have any preconceived notions about the Bentley students you are travelling with as this experience really brings people closer together. Be open to meeting the students that attend your new university and get to know them as well. Do not be afraid to try any foods, visit any places or try anything new. Before I left, I was very nervous about missing the comforts of home. But many of the places we traveled to have all the things we could need if it comes to that!

Kailey Sullivan, Corvinus University in Budapest, Hungary
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Managerial Economics major with a focus in Human Resources

Semester abroad:  Fall 2019

Questions? Email me: sulliva_kail@bentley.edu

#1 piece of advice to Bentley students considering study abroad?
My piece of advice that I lived by every day abroad is to try something new or challenging every single day. I thought that this would be easy at first as the beginning month of my experience handed me new situations or places to go every single day. As I got into my routine of going to school and frequenting the same restaurants that I loved, however, it became a little more difficult to switch things up. This is why I kept pushing myself to step out of my conform zone. I knew I’d likely only ever get to live in Budapest for these four months and didn’t want to waste time being too comfortable. I urge future abroad students to catch themselves when they find they are slipping into habits and switch things up.

Kriti Tamang, Nanyang Technological University in Singapore
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Actuarial Science major, Business Studies and Data Technologies minors

Semester abroad: Spring 2019

Questions? Email me: tamang_krit@bentley.edu

What was one of your most meaningful experiences and why?
One of the most meaningful experiences I had was exploring neighboring countries near Singapore with my international friends. Immersing myself in another culture provided me with valuable skills needed for my personal growth by creating a higher level of independence and adaptability. These experiences have not only deepened the international connections I made that have turned into life-long friends but also redefined myself as a global citizen. To me, being a global citizen is much more than traveling or sightseeing – it’s about experiencing and celebrating the diverse ways of life we live around the world.

Sabrina Tan, Nanyang Technological University in Singapore
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Major: Information Systems Audit & Control

Semester abroad: Spring 2019

Questions? Email me: TAN_SABR@bentley.edu

#1 piece of advice for students studying abroad:

Keep an open mind because your abroad experience can be completely different from what you expect it to be! Reading about a different culture is one thing, but experiencing it for yourself is another. The first couple of weeks will be a little rough, but don’t be afraid to ask for help. Be the one to initiate conversation and perhaps a new friend will come out of it! Each person’s experience will be different, so make the most out of your experience in your own way. For myself personally, I always like to just go with the flow.

Gigi Tracey, Universidad Pontificia Comillas in Madrid, Spain
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Marketing major, IDCC & Spanish minors

Semester abroad: Spring 2019

Questions? Email me: tracey_gabr@bentley.edu

Describe a skill or something you learned while studying abroad.

In addition to an influx of soft skills like confidence, public speaking, resilience, or quick thinking, studying abroad also brings skills like budgeting to the forefront. I was tasked even before my trip to outline my finances, planning months in an advance to stay on track. In Spain, I had to put my necessities first, paying rent, bills, and groceries before another trip or activity. Finding budget-friendly accommodations and activities required extra effort and sometimes forced me to simply enjoy the scenery instead of making an unnecessary purchase. Being in charge of my own finances taught me the necessity of frugality, budgeting, and – most importantly – appreciating the simple things in life.

Alexandra Venuti, IES Abroad in Milan, Italy
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Marketing major, IDCC Minor

Semester Abroad: Fall 2018

Questions? Email me: venuti_alex@bentley.edu

What was one of your most meaningful experiences and why?
One of my most meaningful experiences abroad was being able to form connections with residents of my host country. In the IES Milan program we are placed in an apartment with a community assistant from Italy who acts as an RA. I was able to form a strong bond with my CA; she became a great friend and helped me to ease my way into life abroad. It was nice to form a connection with her as she was able to help me practice my Italian and also introduce me to the overall culture in Milan. Many students who studied abroad and regret not meeting more people from their host country, but I am happy to say I was able to form lifelong relationships with not only my community assistant but other Italians as well. 

Sofía Vidal, CIEE Open Campus in Berlin, Germany, & Cape Town, South Africa, and RMIT University in Melbourne, Australia
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Global Studies major, Law minor

Semesters abroad:  Spring 2018 and Spring 2019

Questions? Email me: vidal_sofi@bentley.edu

Describe a skill or something you learned while studying abroad.

I learned to be more patient. In all the places I studied things were very different from the US and one cannot expect it to be the same. I learned to be more patient with people and with the circumstances around me. I just had to accept that it was a different culture and different way of thinking

Melissa Zweigbaum, CIEE in Seville, Spain
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Marketing major

Semester abroad:  Fall 2019

Questions? Email me: zweigba_meli@bentley.edu

What was one of the most meaningful experiences you had abroad?
One of my most meaningful experiences while studying abroad was volunteer teaching English to four and five year olds.  I did this twice a week, an hour per session, and it always brought a smile to my face.  Seeing these children eager to learn and how much they retained each week mesmerized me.  They were always so excited to show me the new words they have learned and those moments really stuck with me.  Every week when I walked in the classroom, their faces lit up and they fought over who got to spend time with me first to learn English.  This was one of the most humbling experiences in my life, and I really enjoyed watching these young children learn so much over the course of the semester.    

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