Santiago Global Ambassadors

olivia in santiagoName: Olivia Budelmann ’23

Major: Mathematics | Spanish Language, Literature & Culture | Environment, Sustainability & Policy

Semester abroad: Spring 2022

What advice would you give to a student studying abroad? The number one piece of advice that I would give a student before they go abroad is to have an open mind. It is unlikely that everything will happen the way they expect it to, but that does not mean that they will not have an amazing experience. For me, I faced challenges that had not even crossed my mind, yet I did not have any difficulties with most of what I thought I would. It has been crucial for all of us in this Santiago program to keep open minds so that we can better adapt to this new way of living and make the most out of our experiences. It is also important to know that it is okay to ask for help. There are so many people in the SU Abroad department who are so willing and excited to make sure you have an incredible experience.

Contact: obbudelm@syr.edu

Topics I’m comfortable discussing: Staying in touch with friends & family, Adjusting to a foreign language, Cultural Immersion, Culture shock / Homesickness, First time abroad, Health, safety, and support, Living with a host family, Meeting locals, Preparing for departure


megan with host family in chileName: Megan Cooper ’23

Major: International Relations

Semester abroad: Spring 2022

What would you say to a student undecided about going abroad? Going abroad has been the best decision I have ever made. I have grown more as a person in my past 2 months living in Chile than I have in my whole life, on an academic, professional, emotional, and interpersonal level. Being here has been an opportunity to push myself in a way I never have before, and be forced to strengthen my own coping strategies. Yes, being abroad is scary and hard sometimes. And yes, you miss some time on campus. But at the end of the day, every hard experience is a new and exciting challenge waiting for you, allowing you to grow to be the person you want to be, whether you realize it now or not.

Contact: mpcooper@syr.edu

Topics I’m comfortable discussing: Staying in touch with friends & family, Adjusting to a foreign language, Cultural Immersion


sophie in chileName: Sophie Clinton ’23

Major: Political Science

Semester abroad: Spring 2022

What was your most valuable experience abroad? From the experiences I’ve had so far in Santiago, my experiences working as an intern have been the most valuable to me. For the past few months, I’ve been working at the Museum of Human Rights and Memory in Santiago. This museum is dedicated to educating people on the history of the Pinochet military dictatorship (1973-1990), its impact on Chile in general, and remembering the disappeared, executed, and tortured. My work as an intern so far has been to help create a course on the preventino of genocide. I am currently working closely with the director of training and content at the museum, as well as three Chilean attorneys, to create and structure the course to be as engaging and effective as possible. The most valuable experiences I’ve had while in Chile have been talking with my fellow interns and other employees of the museum about the importance of educating people on dangerous and scary history so that it does not repeat itself. Being able to have these conversations in Spanish with my colleagues and them being open to talk to me about these topics has been so beautiful.

Contact: sclinton@syr.edu

Topics I’m comfortable discussing: Staying in touch with friends & family, Adjusting to a foreign language, Cultural Immersion


jensen in chileName: Jensen Bee ’23

Major: International Relations; Spanish Lang, Lit & Culture

Semester abroad: Spring 2022

What was your most valuable experience abroad? Patagonia was an unforgettable experience. We stayed in Puerto Natales, a little port city that has become a melting pot of Chilean culture as well as the influence of old immigration settlements from Argentina and Europe. Our first day there, we were tasked with interviewing members of the community, and it was amazing to make connections with locals using Spanish in some of the first weeks of our program. We were able to learn about the affects of tourism from a local perspective, and throughout the trip we stayed friendly with the owner of a jewelry store, who I eventually bought a ring from. Throughout the weekend we were able to experience breathtaking nature. We took a boat tour to see two glaciers, Serrano and Balmaceda. The lake was this stunning teal color, and we also got to see waterfalls, sea lions, and trek through forests.

Contact: jbee02@syr.edu

Topics I’m comfortable discussing: Staying in touch with friends & family, Adjusting to a foreign language, Cultural Immersion