London Global Ambassadors

Name: Steven McDonald ’17

Hometown: Ellicott City, MD

Major: Psychology

Semester abroad: Fall 2016

What was your most valuable experience abroad? I participated in a program called Encompass, A Journey to Understanding. The best part of this journey was the people I spent it with, and it was so special because they were from many walks of life: Palestine, Israel, Indonesia, Egypt, Thailand, the United Kingdom, and the US. I am still processing the experience. I bore witness to unbelievable narratives, ones that have brought me both joy and extreme sadness. These emotions have fueled me in getting involved more and helping those in need to the best of my ability.

Contact: samcd100@syr.edu


laurenpieferName: Lauren Piefer (Dec. ’17)

Hometown: Oconomowoc, WI

Majors: Policy studies and International relations

Semester abroad: Fall 2016

What would you say to a student undecided about studying abroad? If you’re able to go abroad, you should. It’s not an opportunity to waste because it truly only comes once in your life. Abroad is so much more than adapting to studying in a new place or with foreign instructors, it’s about learning about the world around you and the space you fill, who you are as a person, and who you want to strive to be in the future. Abroad is eye opening-exciting-fun. And I wouldn’t change any experience I had for the world–and I couldn’t imagine my life without doing so. In fact, after my semester abroad I’ve decided that I want to pursue a masters abroad. It opens your eyes to so many new things, new experiences, new people, new anything–and that makes you a better person.

Contact: lepiefer@syr.edu


gracewnorowskiName: Grace Wnorowski ’18

Hometown: Manasquan, NJ

Major: Advertising

Semester abroad: Fall 2016

What would you say to a student undecided about studying abroad? Studying abroad expands your boundaries farther than anyone could ever think possible. While at SU, we are privileged with an amazing campus, classes, and faculty, which are all hard to leave, but trust me, it is worth it. In those four months abroad you’ll learn more about yourself and more about the rest of the world than you ever could sitting in a classroom on campus. You can read in a text book about the castles in Prague, you can look at pictures on Google Images, but nothing will compare to walking along those cobble stone roads and seeing giant castles rise into the night sky. You will learn to appreciate these extraordinary moments, but also the small moments, like when your British professors think it is funny that you clap for guest speakers. Wherever you choose to study, you will be experiencing new culture, new lives, new thoughts, and new moments, all of which will push you to grow as a person and expand your knowledge far, far beyond the typical classroom.

Contact: gawnorow@syr.edu


Processed with VSCO with c3 presetName: Abigail Wells ’18

Hometown: Wyomissing, PA

Majors: Marketing management and Advertising

Semester abroad: Fall 2016

What did you wish you had known before going abroad? Before going abroad, I was obsessively planning every last detail of my time there. I was so nervous I was going to miss seeing something I would never get to see again. I was treating my semester in Europe like a vacation. When I got there, I quickly came to the realization that I wasn’t there to sight-see for a little and then leave; I live there. Instead of forcing myself to see every last tourist attraction available, I made my time there more about living briefly like a London local, and my experience was incredible. It made me want to go back there and live there for a little while longer. When I stopped worrying about constant planning and sight seeing and started going grocery shopping in different places or attending different markets, I was so much more enthralled with the abroad lifestyle.

Contact: aewells@syr.edu


kimrothName: Kim Roth ’18

Hometown: Westfield, NJ

Major: Musical theatre

Semester abroad: Fall 2016

What was your most valuable experience abroad? One of many unforgettable experiences happened during half-term. I went on an SU Field Trip to the Adriatic Coast, touring Croatia, Bosnia Herzegovina, and Montenegro with a group of SU students. While in Croatia, we visited the botanical garden on the Island of Lokrum. Upon our arrival we were given the choice to do whatever we wanted for the time being as long as we got back to the ferry at a specific time. While some people chose to go to the Game of Thrones sightseeing, I chose to go on a little excursion with our guides Linda Kalnina and Mark Spokes. We chatted a bit about our past travels and our future hopes of adventure. The three of us shared this amazing vegan lunch while taking in the fantastic views. We hiked the island and even tried some local fruit. It was an incredible day and I got to bond with some people I never would have met if it were not for SU Abroad.

Contact: kimroth14@gmail.com


danielroetzerName: Daniel Roetzer (Dec. ’17)

Hometown: Buffalo, NY

Major: International relations

Semester abroad: Fall 2016

What was your most valuable experience abroad? I wish I knew that it is, at times, extremely hard – that being thrown into a new culture comes with shock and that existing in a foreign city without any of the comforts we’ve always known can be both scary and alienating. I wish I knew before going abroad that these feelings were not just normal, but an expected response to adjusting to a new place. It is a tough adjustment, one that very few students and others who’ve traveled discuss. It can be a hard reality to come to terms with the fact that you are not happy during an experience that should be the happiest of your life. However, that neither means quit nor does that mean shut down. Instead, it just means knowing that this is normal, expected, and that it is essential to have patience with yourself and with the new situation you’ve found yourself in.

Contact: djroetze@syr.edu


jackiepageName: Jacqueline Page ’18

Hometown: Potomac, MD

Majors: International relations and TRF

Semester abroad: Fall 2016

What was your most valuable experience abroad? While studying abroad in London, I wanted to get to know British students through the association with University College of London. I decided to try out for the UCLU Lacrosse team and ended up making their women’s first team. Within a week of being in London, I had met a group of 20 UCL student athletes and began to learn more about British culture. It was a life-changing experience, beginning to understand the ways in which our lives differed in education, upbringing, and sports. It was unforgettable debating with them about the future of the world and gaining a deeper understanding to all sides of arguments. Overall, all my experiences in London were life-changing, but the core element stayed the same throughout: the London students.

Contact: jlpage@syr.edu


kevinzsitvayName: Kevin Zsitvay ’17

Hometown: New Vernon, NJ

Major: Information management & technology

Semester abroad: Spring 2016

What was your most valuable experience abroad? The most valuable experience while abroad was most certainly the traveling. Traveling outside the country for the first time, and without the assistance of my parents was a chance for me to mature and experience different cultures. The memories I made, whether it was missing a connecting train to Liverpool while trying to make a football match and having to redirect to Manchester then back to Liverpool, or getting an upgrade to a first-class view of the French countryside thanks to a kind French man and his family, I felt like I had seen the world, even though I was only on one continent.

Contact: kevinzsitvay@gmail.com


meghanmistryName: Meghan Mistry ’17

Hometown: League City, TX

Major: Broadcast & digital journalism

Semester abroad: Spring 2016

What was your most valuable experience abroad? The most valuable experience I had abroad was tutoring in London. I found a program that accepted college students as tutors and I worked with two 16 year old boys in a London suburb for 2-4 hours a week. It got me outside of central London and gave me the ability to experience what life in the UK is actually like. It also exposed me to a different side of London, where instead of being surrounded by wealth and commercialism, I was working with two boys who were both immigrants, receiving free lunches at school and free tuition. It was the most valuable because my time in London really shaped who I am and what I want to do in the future, and this was a way to give back to the city and leave an impression on students there. The boys were always the highlight of my week and I loved seeing them grow and improve.

Contact: mqmistry@gmail.com


rachellockhartName: Rachel Lockhart ’17

Hometown: Lynwood, WA

Major: Psychology and Magazine journalism

Semesters abroad: Spring 2015 (Costa Rica) and Spring 2016 (London)

What do you wish you had known before going abroad? I wish I’d known how profoundly it was going to affect me and my life. Although, I’m not entirely sure there’s a proper way to express that to someone. Before you go everyone that’s already been tells you that “it’s amazing,” and will be “the best experience of your life,” but those words are almost hollow until you go yourself, and even then I don’t think those phrases actually capture what it’s like. I think about London every single day. I miss London every single day. I relive moments from my time abroad every single day. I long to go back every single day. What I learned about myself and about the world during my time abroad left me a vastly different person than when I arrived. I came back home with a renewed passion, sense of bravery, and a drive to make sure that more people are afforded even a fraction of the opportunities that I’ve had.

Contact: lockhartrn@gmail.com


angelakimName: Angela Kim ’17

Hometown: Potomac, MD

Major: Industrial Design

Semester abroad: Spring 2016

What was your most valuable experience abroad? While I was abroad, I spent a majority of my time working on my laptop on assignments at a cafe called Hubbard&Bel. Almost every time I was there, I found myself chatting with the person sitting next to me. Many people from all over the world that were visiting London, along with the community of regular locals would pop into the cafe. From networking with fellow designers who gave me helpful advice, meeting a famous YouTube star who introduced me to English/Korean culture, to an inspiring woman who I eventually ended up interning for, I felt like every person that I sat with ended up touching my life in some way, shape, or form. I was never great at public speaking and keeping up a conversation with strangers because, to be honest, I did not have enough confidence in myself due to a lack of self-identity. However, in London, I truly learned who I was and who I wanted to be. I was an introvert ready to break out of my shell to become the extrovert that I always dreamed of being. SU Abroad had given me a chance to be in a totally foreign environment where I could start a new chapter and start living a life that I truly love.

Contact: akim25@syr.edu


Processed with VSCO with c1 presetName: Jessica Bayer ’17

Hometown: Doylestown, PA

Major: Communications Design

Semester abroad: Spring 2016

What would you say to a student undecided about going abroad? Go! Do whatever it takes to go abroad, especially right now while you are young, in college, absorbing knowledge like a sponge, and have access to all that SU has to offer across the globe. Yes, it is a bit daunting, and at times you might have that tingly feeling in your stomach like you did on your first day of freshman year, but embrace that feeling. That’s what makes it so exciting; this experience is something new and fresh, and it will open your mind in ways you did not think possible, bettering you as both a student and a person.

Contact: jrbayer@syr.edu


""Name: Clare Ramirez ’17

Hometown: Los Angeles, CA

Major: Magazine journalism

Semester abroad: Fall 2015

What would you say to a student undecided about going abroad? Going abroad will make you learn so much more about yourself than you ever expected. You’re going to be surrounded by so much history and culture, but in the end, you’ll learn more about yourself than you will about London. I know it might seem nerve-wracking to be in another country but honestly, going abroad is like freshman year all over again— it’s another adventure disguised within your college years. You meet so many new people, you’re in a new environment that you get to explore, and you’re faced with the task of making this new, strange place your home for the next few months. It’s the way you deal with these new things that will make you stronger and more adaptive. You’ll return to the U.S. feeling more confident in your abilities and with the realization that the world is a lot bigger than you thought it was.

Contact: clramire@syr.edu


""Name: Erica Kaplan ’17

Hometown: Bridgewater, NJ

Major: Advertising

Semester abroad: Fall 2015

What did you wish you would have known before going abroad? I wish that someone had told me to expect the unexpected, and just go with it. Going abroad will undoubtedly push you out of your comfort zone. Try weird foods, visit countries where you don’t not speak the language, explore parts of your home city you haven’t been before and hang out with people you didn’t know at Syracuse. Embrace and take advantage of all the changes happening around you.

Contact: ekkaplan@syr.edu


""Name: Ariana Sahinovic ’17

Hometown: New Fairfield, CT

Major: International relations

Semester abroad: Fall 2015

What would you say to a student undecided about going abroad? You get to completely immerse yourself in a different culture and way of life. By traveling from one country to another, you learn to become independent and adventurous. Trying foods that are specific to a country or talking to the local people will make you feel more a part of the global community. Being in London I learned to be independent and it was the most satisfying thing when someone comes up to you on the tube and asks you how to get to Oxford St. I was no longer a tourist but a Londoner! I became a part of a new culture and I will always consider it my second home.

Contact: amsahino@syr.edu


""Name: Nisha Stickles ’17

Hometown: Bangkok, Thailand

Major: Magazine journalism

Semester abroad: Fall 2015

What do you wish you would have known before going abroad? I wish I took into consideration budgeting for my weekend trips. Although I budgeted for my expenses in London and travel to trips, I didn’t take into account how much money I would spend while I was gone. This poor planning led me to being way over budget. I wasn’t going to give up the luxuries of eating out when I was gone, but upon returning to London I felt an immense sense of guilt.

Contact: nstickle@syr.edu


""Name: Jessica Dunne ’17

Hometown: Andover, MA

Major: Advertising

Semester abroad: Fall 2015

What was your most valuable experience abroad? The Ireland Signature Seminar that I took before going to London was the most valuable experience for me. The seminar was 10 days long and our group became a tight-knit family. The support system of our group during those 10 days helped pave the way for a successful semester in London.

Contact: jmdunne@syr.edu


""Name: Alison Socolow ’17

Hometown: South Salem, NY

Major: Inclusive elementary and special education

Semester abroad: Fall 2015

What would you say to a student undecided about studying abroad? Studying abroad during college is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. The idea of studying in a foreign country is exhilarating. After all, when will you ever be given the chance to have a foreign country be your classroom? One’s time abroad is the perfect time to travel and explore the rest of the world. You will meet people from various backgrounds who will shape your perspectives on the world.

Contact: alsocolo@syr.edu


""Name: Nicole Das ’17

Hometown: Albany, NY

Major: Public relations

Semester abroad: Fall 2015

What was your most valuable experience abroad? The most valuable experience that I gained from being abroad was that I learned how to be independent and happy with myself. Living in a big city like London, I was surrounded by culture and so many things I wanted to see and experience. All of my classmates had different schedules, so sometimes I would go to museums and have meals alone in-between classes, which allowed for self-reflection. Some people our age can sometimes be afraid to be alone, but it is a valuable life lesson that I took away from my abroad experience.

Contact: nmdas@syr.edu


""Name: Christine Chung ’17

Hometown: Northbrook, IL

Major: Communication and rhetorical studies

Semester abroad: Fall 2015

What did you wish you had known before going abroad? I wish I knew some tips that would have saved me more money in the long run (because the pound drained my bank account quickly). Also I wish I knew more about the independent housing process because it was really stressful at first. But the SU Abroad staff were extremely helpful throughout everything and my friends and I lived in a wonderful location!

Contact: chchung02@syr.edu