UC International ProgramsUniversity of Cincinnati

UC International Programs


Education Abroad Ambassadors are UC students who have recent study abroad experience. If you need information about a particular country, program or have concerns about traveling to a new place; feel free to contact an Ambassador.

If you are interested in becoming an Education Abroad Ambassador contact Jill Reister, Education Abroad Advisor at jill.reister@uc.edu.


Name: Olivia McCartney

Major: Spanish and Communications

Study Abroad Location(s): Madrid, Spain

Best piece of advice you got while abroad: Try everything that you can, especially food, travel, and especially speaking the foreign language!

What was the most unusual or “non-American” thing you did abroad? I went to a discoteca and danced until 7 am, and it was perfectly normal.

Other Travel Experiences: In Spain I went to Alicante, Toledo, Segovia, San Sebastian and Bilbao. I also traveled to Lisbon/Portugal, Venice/Italy, London/England and Amsterdam/Holland

Fun Fact from your study abroad: I knew very little Spanish but by the time I left Spain, three and a half months after arriving I had learned a remarkable amount of Spanish and could successfully communicate with the locals. 


Name: Sara Sadat-Hossieny

Major: Neurobiology, Biomedical Biology

Study Abroad Location(s): Meknes, Morocco

Best piece of advice you got while abroad: You can be happy anywhere you are. You just have to learn to appreciate the beauty and opportunities of your own environment.

What was the most unusual or “non-American” thing you did abroad? On our visit to the Saharan desert, I had the opportunity to sleep under the stars and to wake up before the morning call to prayer to watch the sun rise with the talented and multilingual Berbers. They taught me how to cook couscous, play the drums, and race up sand dunes!

Other Travel Experiences: Spain- The orientation to my Morocco study abroad program took place in Granada, Spain. Granada was the perfect transition from the culture of the west to that of the east. After visiting the Alhambra, a Moorish fort with remnants of Islamic architecture, I was ready for the next few months in Morocco. I also had the chance to visit Barcelona and Madrid on separate trips to Spain.

*Favorite phrase/quote in any language: Inshallah! This phrase means “God willing” but the Moroccans used it in a lot of different ways. It ranged in meaning from a polite way to say “no” or “probably not” to a more promising “hopefully.”

“We’ll make it to class on time, Inshallah,” usually meant we’ll probably be late to class. 


Name: Sally Amkoa

Major: Economics

Study Abroad Location(s): San Jose, Costa Rica and Bocas Del Toro, Panama

How  has studying abroad impacted your life? Studying abroad made me change my major! The experience gave me a great opportunity for self reflection and helped me find the courage to follow my passion. I went to a Spanish speaking country armed only with a phrase to say “hello” and a strong desire to learn the language. Three months later, I could have a decent conversation with my host mom in Spanish. This little victory helped me become more patient and commited to succeeding when faced with challenges. I also made very remarkable friends while abroad. I picked up different habits that I admired in them and made a point of applying them in my life; so far, things have worked out really great.

Best advice you got abroad: Be kind to yourself. Celebrate your successes, don’t beat yourself up about your losses. You never know where life will take you; you might as well enjoy the ride.


Name: Will McIlwain

Major: B.A. International Affairs;French;Arabic

Study Abroad Location(s): Morocco; Tunisia; United Arab Emirates, Haiti, France

How has study abroad impacted your life: My study abroad experience in Morocco developed my skills in understanding the many layers to a culture. I now have a better understanding of the Arabic language, Islam, and the political situation in the Arab World. The knowledge I gained allows me to create more developed thesis’ on topics related to language, politics, and the Middle East and gives me a competitive edge academically and professionally.


Name: Rachel Miller

Major: Urban Planning

Study Abroad Location: Amsterdam

Why do you want to be a Study Abroad Ambassador? I had an amazing experience abroad. I met friends from all over the world, and it is something I believe all students should do if given the opportunity.

Best piece of advice you got while abroad:  You can’t do it all! Oh man, I had to get used to that one. You move to a new country and you are overwhelmed with new sights, people, places, ideas, classes, it can get crazy. I’m an ambitious person, and I have traveled to other countries in the past, but only for a week or two. In those types of trips you are packing as much as possible into everyday, but for 4 months you will burn out with that mentality. Sometimes you just have to step back, really see what you want to do, be in the moment, and enjoy your surroundings.


Name: Alyssa Roberts

Major: International Affairs, French, Human Rights

Study Abroad Location: Geneva Switzerland a/ Kent State Univ.

How has study abroad impacted your life: Studying in Geneva for four months was the most impactful experience of my life so far. I made incredible friends, gained invaluable experience in many different European cultures, and was able to take classes pertaining directly to my academic major at UC--from top-tier professors in the field.

Best piece of advice you got while abroad: You can sleep when you die. It sounds a little morbid, but it’s true. There’s too much to see and do in the world to spend too much time missing out on it all.

clark horning _ ghana

Name: Clark Horning

Major: International Affairs

Study Abroad Location (s): Ghana, Germany

Favorite Site: Afadjato, the tallest mountain in Ghana.

Most unusual or “non-American” thing you did abroad: Shopping at the art market was unusual. Ghanaian vendors were very aggressive in persuading you to buy from them. I had to get the hang of it – and learn how to say “No.”

Favorite phrase: Mɛpacho te so. (Please lower the price)



Name: Francesca Bonapart

Major: Architectural Engineering Technology

Study Abroad Location: India

How has study abroad impacted your life: Going to India helped me understand conservative culture from a different perspective. Coming from the east coast, I’m used to diversity and non-inferiority as a woman...My eyes were opened when I saw how important the role of a woman is in the agricultural industry...

Most unusual thing you did abroad? I spun cotton on the porch of Gandhi’s house in Ahmedabad.



Name: Kelly Taylor

Major: Electronic Media

Study Abroad Location: Birmingham, UK Exchange Program

Fun Fact from your study abroad: Birmingham isn’t a tourist city. It’s big and there is a lot of fun to be had, but it’s definitely a truly English place. 

Any advice for your peers: Seeing the world is essential. Most of my friends regret not studying abroad. They think it’s too expensive or they will miss out on fun events here in Cincinnati.  I finance 100% of my college education through grants and loans. I also pay for everything else in my life from working part time. Even if you don’t have a lot of extra money to spare, it’s still possible to study abroad. People need to know that!


Anthony DelaRosa, NUFS Exchange Program, Japan

Name: Anthony DelaRosa

Major: English Creative Writing & Asian Studies

Study Abroad Location: Nagoya, Japan

Program: Exchange - Nagoya University of Foreign Studies 

Most unusual or “non-American” thing you did abroad:  Performing a Hip Hop Dance at a Japanese University in front of hundreds of college peers was rewarding. Also, I was studying in Nagoya, Japan during the Tohoku earthquake disaster -- a big impact on my life.  This tested my ability to adapt to adverse situations because of the limits on purchasing water and certain staples, such as rice and dry foods.  As exchange students we were able to fundraise money for the dislocated people of Japan.

Fun Fact from your study abroad: Did you know that Japanese Giant Killer Hornets can hospitalize a person just by one single sting?

Favorite phrase/quote in any language: Korekara Minna De Meccha Kucha Odotte Sawago Sawago. / From now on let’s all dance and make noise like we’ve never done before.

Did you receive any scholarships to help pay for study abroad? Yes. I received the UC International Programs Grant and the Benjamin Gilman Scholarship.


Name: Keenen Maull

Major: Spanish Language; B.S. Paralegal Studies

Study Abroad Location (s): Spain, Guatemala

Most unusual or “non-American” thing you did abroad: The most unusual thing I did abroad was throw toilet paper in the trash after using the bathroom instead of flushing it.  The most “non-American” thing I did was haggle for lower priced souvenirs in a market.

How has study abroad impacted your life: Guatemala made me more appreciative of everything I have. Coming from humble beginnings I believed everything I had was basic. I took the ability to drink water from the tap for granted. Prior to the trip I thought of people with more than I have as privileged and spoiled. Post-Guatemala I realize that everyone who has access to the most basic of American amenities is privileged compared to what I witnessed. Although, Guatemala isn’t as bad as a lot of people think or make it seem. I thought the conditions were perfectly habitable and were as basic as anyone would need. I enjoyed not being a spoiled American.



Leah (second from left) - Thai Kickboxing

Name: Leah Goldfarb

Major: Finance and International Business

Study Abroad Location(s): Bangkok, Thailand

Why Thailand?  The cultures of Thailand, Cambodia, Laos, and Vietnam are beautiful. I visited the jungle in Northern Thailand and rode elephants. I also visited the gorgeous islands of Southern Thailand. I have no doubt that I will return to S. East Asia in the near future!

Most “non-American” thing you did abroad? Celebrated the Thai New Year, the world's biggest water fight! I could not leave the house without getting soaked for at least 3 days.

Favorite daily activity? Riding motorbike taxis! They were easy to catch and only cost 30 cents!


Lindy Wolaver, Outside Bukingham Palace

Name: Lindy Wolaver

Major: Communications  

Study Abroad Location (s): AIFS in London, England

Other Travel Experiences: I traveled to Barcelona/Spain, Salzburg/Austria, Scotland, Paris/France, Amsterdam/Holland, Bath, Stonehenge, Oxford/England, along the coast of Croatia, and Florence/Italy

Fun Fact: I was in England during the Royal wedding and camped out for 17 hours outside Buckingham Palace. Duchess Catherine Middleton looks more beautiful in person!


Monteverde, Costa Rica

Name: Nathan Jespersen

Major: Biochemistry

Study Abroad Location: Monteverde, Costa Rica

Program: CIEE Tropical Ecology and Conservation

Most unusual or “non-American” thing you did abroad?  Climbing up the inside of a Ficus tree whose parasitized inner tree had rotted out.  Catching and holding all sorts of birds.  Almost getting bit by a venomous snake.  Rompin through tons of beautiful forests.  Zip lining through the rain forest.  And many more!!


Name: Lindsay Black

Major: Early Childhood Education

Study Abroad Location: Stellenbosch, South Africa

Most unusual or “non-American” thing you did? Lived in a tribal village for 1 week; no electricity, no running water and no crime. Got my face painted with mud, carried water on my head and cooked leaves which surprisingly tasted good.

Favorite Site Visited: The Wild Coast or Botswana. Both unbelievably beautiful places. Languages studied/spoken while abroad: Mostly English but learned some Xhosa and Afrikaans.



Name: Lauren Magrisso

Major: B.I.S Design Strategy

Study Abroad Location(s): India, Israel, Peru, Canada, England, Ghana

Favorite Site Visited: In Israel, highlights were riding a camel in the desert, staying in a Bedouin tent, meeting a long lost relative I found on facebook, and going to the Lebanese border to observe Hezbollah life.

Fun Fact from your study abroad: Earned 5 stitches in a rural India hospital. I was doored while riding a motorcycle.



Name: Deepika Joshi

Major: International Affairs

Study Abroad Location: USAC India

Favorite Site(s): The Himalayas, the Taj Mahal and Hampi

Best piece of advice: Avoid being ripped off by bargaining down to 50% of what the vender asks!

Why did you choose India? I was born in India. My decision, in many ways was influenced by my wanting to know more about myself and the country in which my parents spent most of their lives.



Kaitilin, Global Learning Semester

Name: Kaitlin Dickensheets

Major: Political Science

Study Abroad Location: Nicosia, Cyprus

Program: Global Learning Semester

Other Travel Experiences: GLS offers a multi-country excursion; Cyprus, Greece, Italy, Egypt, Germany, France, Luxembourg, Belgium, Netherlands, Hungary, Slovakia, Czech Republic, and Austria.


Nagoya, Japan Exchange Program

Name: Michael Stoepel   

Major: Economics

Study Abroad Location: Nagoya, Japan - NUFS Exchange

Best piece of advice you got while abroad: "Leave your mind completely open, and don't take too seriously what everyone tells you to expect, because it is different for everyone."  

Favorite phrase/quote in any language: Uraniwa ni wa niwa, niwa niwa niwa, niwatori ari. In the backyard there are two chickens and in the front yard there are two chickens. Tongue-twister



Amanda in Florence, Italy

Name: Amanda Schroeder

Major: Food & Nutrition, Pre-Med with a minor in Chemistry

Study Abroad Location: Florence, Italy

Program: International Studies Abroad (ISA)

Most unusual or “non-American” thing you did abroad? I saw Madama Butterfly, an outdoor opera in Arena di Verona and ate a homemade Italian meal in Tuscany.

Fun Fact from your study abroad: My experience was planned a little over a month in advance!


Wuppertal Exchange, 2010

Name: Derek Vogel

Major: Chemical Engineering

Study Abroad Location: Wuppertal, Germany

Program: UC Co-op

Favorite phrase in any language: Ach, so! (I see!)

Best piece of advice you got while abroad: Don't get frustrated! It takes time to learn a new language and culture."


Blarney Castle, Ireland

Name: Catherine Watson

Major: Marketing and International Business

Study Abroad Location: Cork, Ireland Exchange Program

Where do you call home? Fort Thomas, Kentucky

Most unusual or “non-American” thing you did abroad? I started speaking like the Irish natives. Not necessarily the accent, but using their phrases.

Fun Fact from your study abroad: In Paris, I got caught in a snow storm and slept in airports for 4 days! It was great, I met so many people I would have otherwise not talked to!


Jonathan Hilton Dancing Cueca

Name: Jonathan Hilton

Major: Spanish

Study Abroad Location: Concepcion, Chile

Why did you choose this program? I’m an adventurer. I wanted to challenge my Spanish by going to an area where a unique dialect (Chileno) is spoken. Concepción is beautiful. I thought I’d enjoy living there and I was right!

Most unusual or “non-American” thing you did abroad? I stopped asking myself what the time was and whether or not I was running late.

Fun Fact from Chile: The National Library in Santiago keeps its books behind locked doors. Browsing is prohibited.


Name: Marli Morris

Major: Nursing

Study Abroad Location: Grenoble, France

Program: Academic Programs International 

Best piece of advice you got while abroad? BE FLEXIBLE! You never know what is going to happen, so stay open minded and allow things to find you.

Most “non-American” thing you did abroad? Celebrating Bastille Day on the 14th of July instead of the 4th of July. 

Favorite phrase/quote in any language? “C’est pas Grave” translates to “It doesn’t matter.”


Madrid, Spain


Name: Chelsie Stanley

Major: International Business & Operations Management

Study Abroad Location: Madrid, Spain

Program: UC Department of Romance Languages

Best piece of advice you got while abroad: Carpe Diem

Fun Fact from your study abroad: Spain won the World Cup while I was there!

Most unusual or "non-American" thing you did abroad: I ate octupus and stayed out ALL night at the clubs with friends.


ProWorld in Oaxaca, Mexico

Name: Caitlin McCuddy

Major: International Affairs, Spanish minor

Study Abroad Location: Oaxaca, Mexico

Why did you choose the program in which you participated? I chose ProWorld, because of all the study abroad programs I looked at, it was the only program that combined both taking classes and volunteer work. 

Best piece of advice you got while abroad: Be open to new things. Don’t let fear of the unknown ruin your experience...especially, new foods that may appear weird to you.

What was the most unusual or “non-American” thing you did abroad? I celebrated Day of the Dead, some Mexicans believe death is something we should not fear, but accept. I also ate Chapulinas, or grasshoppers fried with lime.