Category Archives: Study Abroad Blog

Meet our Ambassadors: Andrew Polack

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Student Ambassador, Andrew Polack

MUDEC ’14

Andrew Abroad

Media & Culture Major, Minors in Creative Writing and Film Studies

Ask me a Question! polackaj@miamioh.edu

Advice for Future Study Abroad-ers:

“The quicker you learn it, the better: Everything Will Be Okay. There were a multitude of hiccups during my time abroad such as trains being late or just not arriving at all, hostel reservations going missing, and not being able to fit everything that I wanted to do into my schedule. But if you have a clear head and do some problem solving, everything honestly works out for the better and you won’t have wasted energy on stressing out about a situation you have no control over.”

Meet our Ambassadors: Jake Peters

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Study Abroad Ambassador, Jake Peters

Jake in Greece

Political Science

Miami University Luxembourg (MUDEC)

Have a Question? peters76@miamioh.edu

Advice for Future MUDEC-ers: For people that go to Luxembourg, make sure you really take the time to get to know the country.  My host would always give us cool places to go explore in Luxembourg City or even in Differdange.

Advice for Underclassman wanted to go Abroad: Go abroad!!  Even if it isn’t to Luxembourg, Miami offers many programs which will suit your wants and needs, whether it is a cost affordable option or one which advocates for travel!!  And make sure to always be adventurous!!  There is always a story waiting to be told!!

 

Meet our Ambassadors: Madison Kawiecki

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Madison Kawiecki, MUDEC (Luxembourg)

Study Abroad AmbassadorAbroad

Majors: Business Economics/Data Analytics

Ask Me a Question! kawiecml@miamioh.edu

For students who are interested in studying abroad in Luxembourg I would say to do something throughout the semester that makes the experience truly your own.  Since all of the students you are with are from Miami it is easy to follow the crowd, whether that is a certain class you enroll in or a weekend trip everyone seems to be taking.  Don’t be afraid to do something out of the box, or different from the other ~100 students on your trip.  It is those experiences that will make your study abroad trip truly unique and one-of-a-kind.

To younger students looking to study abroad in general I would start with a list of the top 5 or top 10 things you’d want out of a study abroad experience.  Whether that is a host family experience, class credit towards your major, or getting to as many countries as possible, once you figure out what you’re looking for the most, finding a program will be a lot easier!  This way you’ll know ahead of time that what you were looking for in your experience will become a reality.

Jackie Heikes | Germany

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Study Abroad Program: Miami University Intensive German Summer 2015

Major: German & Sociology

Minor: Philosophy

Hometown: Oxford, OH

Class: Junior

Campus Involvement: Spectrum President, Miami Swing Syndicate, F-Word, Secular Students of Miami

 

 

 


When did you know you wanted to go abroad and how did you pick your program?

I wanted to study abroad before I ever came to college. I actually picked Miami partially for the Summer German program, as I knew I wanted to study German.

What challenges did you face leading up to/during/after your program? How did you overcome these challenges?

I didn’t feel prepared enough before I left, but I had been to Germany before, and it didn’t take too long to get a good grasp on speaking German daily. During the program I always felt that I wasn’t trying hard enough or speaking enough German since many of the other students had not been learning German as long as I had and spoke mostly English during the trip. I did what I could and had a lot of great interactions with native speakers during the trip, and I think that helped me get over my personal guilt for “not doing my best.” I just had to come to truly appreciate the experiences I was given by the trip and the opportunities I had to expand my vocabulary and better my grammar.

What were your accommodations like?

We stayed in four different cities. In Heidelberg, I shared a vacationer’s apartment with two girls on the trip, and it was very nice and private. In Jena, I stayed with a single host mom, and she was so incredible that by the end of the week she really felt like my honorary mother. In Dessau, we stayed in a student housing apartment from the times of the GDR, which, if I’m being honest, was rather dingy and beat up. In Berlin, we stayed at a wonderful youth hostel that functioned more as a hotel than a hostel by any means.

What is your favorite memory from your time abroad?

Probably spending long evenings talking to my host mom in Jena, as she sat with her cat and watched bad dramas. We had some great conversations about life in the GDR, German film, her views on American politics, and so on.

What did you learn while abroad? Has your experience changed you or your perspective?

I learned a LOT about German and European culture. Also I really learned what it felt like to truly be an outsider– I think I’ve come to appreciate learning in my mother language more than I would ever imagine. I have so much more respect for the students at Miami who did not learn English as their first language. Even though I’ve been learning German for 8 years, moving to a foreign land and having instruction only in your second language is seriously difficult!

Have you been able to use the experience since your return? How?

Not yet, I wouldn’t say. I’m taking my German capstone this semester and I can’t imagine a better way to become more prepared for that class than the Summer German Program.

How did you finance your time abroad? (Financial aid, scholarships, loans, etc.)

I had a scholarship that I was randomly selected for from GRAMELAC that paid for the vast majority of my study abroad. I’m incredibly lucky to have received that.

What advice would you give to other students considering going abroad?

Do it! Go out, find where your comfort zone ends and expand it. There’s a whole huge world out there to explore just waiting for you. If you can find a way to study abroad, do it.

 

Final Call for 2016-2017 Fulbright Applicants

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The Fulbright U.S. Student Phigh-res blue Fulbright logorogram provides opportunities for U.S. students to pursue graduate or professional study, advanced research or English teaching in elementary and secondary schools or universities. Each year, approximately 1,500 Americans travel to more than 130 countries with the Fulbright Program.

Seniors graduating by May 2016, graduate students, and Miami alumni are eligible to apply for the 2016-2017 Fulbright U.S. Student Program grants. The Miami campus deadline is Friday, September 18, 2015. Two final information sessions will be held:

Monday, August 31 from 4-5pm in MacMillan 115
Tuesday, September 1 from 12-1pm in MacMillan 115

Questions about how you can become a part of Miami’s 2016-2017 Fulbright Cohort? Contact Fulbright Program Advisor Karla Guinigundo.