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CSU IP Global Ambassadors

MEET THE CSU IP GLOBAL AMBASSADORS

The CSU IP Global Ambassadors are selected students who have recently returned from studying abroad with CSU IP. Reach out to the ambassadors via email with your questions and to learn more about where they studied overseas!

Want to chat with a Global Ambassador? Join them via zoom in their virtual drop in office hours from 9am to 5pm. Sign up here for a zoom link!
 


Amanda Kraynik

Denmark: Architecture at DIS, Academic Year 2019-2020

Cal Poly San Luis Obispo | Architecture
Email: amkraynik@comcast.net


What is the best advice regarding study abroad?  Don’t let the fear of being in a different country stop you.  Yes, this country speaks a different language; yes, it won’t be the same as the US; yes, getting around a new place will be difficult at first, but what you gain in experience far exceeds any of these difficulties.


What is your favorite travel themed quote? "The world is a book and those who do not travel read only one page." Saint Augustine
 



Whitney Mathews          
France: Language & Culture at Aix-Marseille Université, Academic Year 2019-2020             
San Francisco State University | Broadcast Arts
Email: wmathews22@gmail.com

What was your favorite study abroad memory? My language professor joined together with another language professor in the same level and planned an entire day for both classes in Marseille. We started off taking walking a tour of the city while they gave us a history lesson, telling us things that only locals would know. They then planned a scavenger hunt for us to find special landmarks in Marseille and the winners were given a prize. We then ended the day with some delicious crepes at their favorite local creperie where we laughed, ate, and spent time with our professors as we overlooked the Mediterranean Sea. In addition, we all spoke French the entire time and it was an extremely fun way to practice French in a non-stressful environment and show off our language skills to our professors who had worked so hard to help us improve our French.


 

Jessop Tiedeken              

France: Language & Culture at Aix-Marseille Université, Academic Year 2018-2019             

France: Universities of Paris, MICEFA (in French), Academic Year 2019-2020          

San Francisco State University | Criminal Justice
Email: jjtiedeken@gmail.com


What is your favorite travel themed quote? "Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover." Mark Twain


What is the best advice regarding study abroad? Do it! The prospect of living and studying in a foreign country far from home is a frightening one. It takes a leap of faith to commit to something like that and it is not easy. That said, if anyone is even considering study abroad, I would help reassure them that they can in fact do it.

 


 

Nicole Svilich     

Germany: Architecture at Biberach University of Applied Sciences, Academic Year 2019-2020        

Cal Poly San Luis Obispo | Architecture
Email: nsvilich@calpoly.edu


What is your favorite travel themed quote? "Travel isn't always pretty. It isn't always comfortable. Sometimes it hurts, it even breaks your heart. But that's OK. The journey changes you; it should change you. It leaves marks on your memory, on your consciousness, on your heart, and on your body. You take something with you. Hopefully, you leave something good behind." Anthony Bourdain


What is the best advice regarding study abroad?  List your goals for studying abroad and go somewhere that interests you.

 


 

Jamie Adrianzen

Germany: Language & Culture at University of Tübingen, Academic Year 2019-2020

CSU Northridge | Psychology
Email: Jamieadrianzen@gmail.com


What was your favorite study abroad memory? Going to Berlin and reuniting with CSU IP friends I met in Horb (our pre language program). Our advisors planned out the most perfect tour with the best tour guides. We had jam packed days but it was worth it. We got to meet with the v.p of the Green Party in Germany (Claudia Roth), an amazing opportunity we got that unless you were in the CSU IP program your chances to have a meeting with Mrs. Roth would have been slim.


What is your favorite travel themed quote? "The mind, once stretched by a new idea/experience, never returns to its original dimensions." Ralph Waldo Emerson

 


 

Ethan Nicholl     

Germany: Language & Culture at University of Tübingen, Academic Year 2019-2020           

CSU Chico | International Relations and Communication Studies
Email: edn31@me.com

What is the best advice regarding study abroad? Say yes to absolutely everything. If someone invites you somewhere, say yes, if someone asks for your help, say yes, if there are opportunities to do something, do it. I said yes to absolutely everything that came my way and had the most amazing experience abroad that I could have ever asked for. I know this can be scary, but you have already done the hardest part of signing up to fly out to another country for a year, so you might as well say yes to an adventure while you’re there.

What is your favorite travel themed quote? "Life begins at the end of your comfort zone." Neale Donald Walsch

 


 

Jordan Sweaney              

Germany: Language & Culture at University of Tübingen, Academic Year 2019-2020           

CSU Channel Islands | International/Global Studies
Email: jorsweaney@gmail.com

What was your favorite study abroad memory? My new local friend invited me to come to the "carneval" in his hometown. I didn't understand the impact at the time, but in retrospect, this is my favorite memory not because of the fun part or even the cultural experience. This was my favorite moment of my trip because someone who was so vastly different than me had invited me into his family home. He had invited me to see his life, and not because I was some "fun American" or that he thought I should see Cologne before I returned to America. We truly just wanted to share our lives with each other and create a great memory the way best-friends do. In that weekend I had made a true friendship that defied borders, language, culture. We respected each other for our different backgrounds, not in spite of them. 

 


 

Diana Vazquez 

Germany: Language & Culture at University of Tübingen, Academic Year 2019-2020           

Sonoma State University | Computer Science
Email: vazquez.diana@icloud.com 


What is the best advice regarding study abroad? Learn as much of the language as you possibly can before you leave. I'm not saying be fluent upon arrival, just learn some of it. Even the basics will help you out more than nothing. Look up some of the slang or everyday sayings. Check if there are regional dialects. Make sure you know how to be polite in the language. This is crucial. It's intimidating going to a whole new country with a language you don't know. You'll feel too shy to speak sometimes, afraid that you'll mess up. But that's okay, it's natural. The only way you'll improve is by practicing. And if you start that before leaving, then you'll already be ahead and feel so much more comfortable.


What is your favorite travel themed quote? "The world is a book and those who do not travel read only one page." Agustine of Hippo

 


 

Thania Garcia    

Italy: CSU Florence Center, Academic Year 2019-2020      

CSU Northridge | Journalism
Email: thania.garcia.992@my.csun.edu


What is the best advice regarding study abroad? Firstly, I would congratulate them on making the decision to do so. I would then tell them where they could go ask all the questions they need to ask. It’s important to encourage questions at all points of the process because it’s so easy to get frustrated with things like miscommunications, financial issues, deadlines, and all the paperwork in-between.


What is your favorite travel themed quote? "We are torn between nostalgia for the familiar and an urge for the foreign and the strange. As often as not, we are homesick for the places we have never known." Carson McCullers

 


 

Andrea Hale      

Italy: CSU Florence Center, Academic Year 2019-2020      

CSU San Marcos | Liberal Studies
Email: nannersh@gmail.com

What is your favorite travel themed quote? "Travel is not reward for working, it's education for living." Anthony Bourdain


What is the best advice regarding study abroad?  Spend everyday like it is your last day there. Every opportunity you get to travel, GO DO IT! This is a once and a life time opportunity, the moment that you are in will never return so do it while you still can.

 


 

Alisala Nunes    

Italy: CSU Florence Center, Academic Year 2019-2020      

San Jose State University | Art History
Email: alisala.nunes@sjsu.edu

What was your favorite study abroad memory? During the PLP break, I took the train from Florence to Lucca for their annual Comics and Games convention. I am a huge fan of the Witcher series, which is a book-turned-video-game-turned-Netflix fantasy series that has an international fanbase. I met up with an online friend I had made in the community and was able to attend panels where I got the chance to listen to some of the cast and crew share otherwise unknown tidbits about the upcoming show. My Italian was strong enough that I was able to chat with locals while waiting in line (they were impressed with how much Italian I'd already learned) and I also found that I could understand some of the Italian parts of the interview panels. Studying abroad basically gave me the freedom to continue to be myself and engage in the things that I loved while simultaneously enriching my academic experience and bolstering my CV. I have a copy of the first book in the Witcher series in Italian that I treasure as both a valuable memory and a useful way to review my Italian while I'm away from other Italian-speakers.

 


 

Tessa Cervantes-Roth   

Italy: Studio Art at CSU Florence Center, Academic Year 2019-2020            

CSU Northridge | Art (Studio/Performance)
Email: tessa.cervantesroth.307@my.csun.edu


What is your favorite travel themed quote? "Live life with no excuses. Travel with no regrets." Oscar Wilde


What is the best advice regarding study abroad?  Do as much research on the location you want to study abroad. It is less overwhelming when you know what to expect rather than being surprised and being anxious because of it the whole time.

 


 

Alondra Paola Moreno 

Italy: Studio Art at CSU Florence Center, Academic Year 2019-2020            

San Diego State University | Graphic Design
Email: alondrapaolamoreno@gmail.com


What was your favorite study abroad memory? March 6, 2020, will forever remain as one of the most crucial moments of my young adult life. All of the museums in Florence were closed to all nationalities except Italian, but I was not going to allow that to stop me from saying goodbye to the reason I drastically changed my life. This day was the ultimate Italian language and comprehension test. I had to look, speak, and move like an Italian in order to enter the Gallery of the Academy to say goodbye to my beloved David. I felt like a spy putting on my best attempt of a typical Florentine outfit while practicing my pronunciation as I headed towards the museum. To my surprise, I passed through security and the ticket office without a single problem. Not a single individual doubted me as I took the first step inside the museum. The gallery was completely empty with the exception of an older couple. I could not help but cry knowing I might never see him again. Michelangelo’s David has always fascinated me because I identified with it. My love for this sculpture was so pure and intense that I deciphered a way to move to Florence, Italy to be able to continuously see it.  A miracle occurred and I was alone with the sculpture. For almost an hour, I had the opportunity to have this masterpiece completely for myself. As I left for the final time, I realized how much I had grown as an individual and, most importantly, I recognized the power of my own determination.

 


 

Jocelyn Sanchez

Japan: University of Tsukuba, Academic Year 2019-2020 

CSU Long Beach | Economics
Email: jocelynsanch3z@gmail.com


What is your favorite travel themed quote? "Wherever you go, go with all your heart." Confucius


What is the best advice regarding study abroad?  I have always been a person that overthinks and gets scared of trying new things and I kept second guessing myself as to whether or not I made the right decision about studying abroad but the moment my plane landed and I was taking a bus to the place that would be my home for the next year I knew I made the right decision. You might have tough times while abroad that make you second guess your decision but know that you made the right choice and that your time abroad will help you develop as a person and before you know it your time to go back home is here and you will realize just how much you cherished your time abroad.

 


 

Marley Uyemura             

Japan: Waseda University, Academic Year 2019-2020       

CSU Fullerton | Human Services Collaborative
Email: uyemura45@yahoo.com


What was your favorite study abroad memory? Getting to experience all four seasons in such a beautiful country.  Being born and raised in Los Angeles, California, I have not really gotten to live through the change of seasons.  Here we have summer and "not" summer, but it was not until I went abroad that I got to experience the simple, yet breath-taking, views of a summer festival in Kyoto, snow falling in Hokkaido, leaves changing colors in Nikko, and the gorgeous spring bloom of cherry blossoms that I saw in Tokyo.  I was just in awe of how beautiful it was to be able to experience all of the seasons in some of my (new) favorite places.


What is your favorite travel themed quote? "Travel makes one modest, you see what tiny of a place you occupy in the world." Gustave Flaubert

 


 

Gabriella Jeane de Asis 

Japan: Waseda University, Academic Year 2019-2020       

CSU Northridge | Computer Science
Email: gabriellajeane.deasis.167@my.csun.edu


What was your favorite study abroad memory? I remember feeling restless so I grab a stack of brochures, chose a location, looked up the train route, and left early the next morning. I took about 3 different trains and a bus to get to Mt. Hidone to go on a three-hour hike. I remember getting off of the bus finding the trailhead and being giddy with excitement. Everything looked so beautiful: the trees, the leaves, the moss, the flowers, the water, it was all amazing. It felt so liberating to pick a location and travel there. I did it by myself and went on my own schedule. As wonderful as that day was, it wasn't without mishap. Which included part of the trail being eroded and I had to turn back, the onsen I was going to visit being closed due to COVID, and falling asleep on the train and missing my stop. Even with all the "bad" things that happened that day, I also learned a lot of lessons. I learned about my ability to travel. I learned that I enjoyed going on solo adventures. I learned that I was capable of finding my way and planning on the go when things don't work out.

 


 

Yanina Castaneda           

Mexico: Tecnológico de Monterrey (in English), Academic Year 2019-2020             

CSU Northridge | Undeclared
Email: yaninacastaneda6@gmail.com


What is your favorite travel themed quote? "I'm In Love With Cities I've Never Been To And People I've Never Met." John Green


What was your favorite study abroad memory? Arrival day, I arrived in the city of Queretaro, Just me and my two giant suitcases. I got on a taxi to take me to my host family. As I was passing through the city, watching cars drive besides me, I was so excited and nervous to start something new. I knew I was home.

 


 

Gloria Mejia      

South Korea: Yonsei University, Academic Year 2019-2020             

Sonoma State University | Sociology/Applied Sociology
Email: mejia@sonoma.edu


What is your favorite travel themed quote? "When you stop doing things for fun, you might as well be dead." Ernest Hemingway


What is the best advice regarding study abroad?  Invest their time intensively researching as much as they can and especially make sure to talk to alumni.

 


 

Alondra Cortes-Suarez 

Spain: Universidad de Granada, Academic Year 2019-2020             

CSU Chico | Child and Family Development
Email: acortes-suarez@mail.csuchico.edu


What was your favorite study abroad memory? My last day, saying goodbye to everyone, to Granada, to Spain, and to all of the memories. At that moment when I was crying tears of sadness, I realized how much love I have for this city and for these people. I wished that this experience was not over. I hoped that I had more time. The reason why I wished and hoped is that I was surrounded by so much love.


What is the best advice regarding study abroad?  Just do it, take a risk. I was so scared and nervous to study abroad but now I am so glad I did because it was the best experience of my life. I cannot guarantee that it will be yours too but you will never know if you do not try. Risk it now, do it now that you can. Life is about taking risks.

 


 

Anna Fernandez              

Spain: Universidad de Granada, Academic Year 2019-2020             

Sonoma State University | Biology
Email: fernaann@sonoma.edu


What is the best advice regarding study abroad?  Now or never baby!! We are the most free we will ever be right NOW. No family or kids or mortgage or career. You’ll be in college either way... so why not do it abroad?!


What is your favorite travel themed quote? “Home is where the heart is.” Pliny the Elder

 


 

Miriam Gabriel 

Spain: Universidad de Granada, Academic Year 2019-2020             

CSU Northridge | Kinesiology
Email: miriam.gabriel.176@my.csun.edu


What is the best advice regarding study abroad? JUST DO IT!


What was your favorite study abroad memory? Our first two weeks, almost every night we would go out to explore the city through its food, narrow streets, conversation exchanges, tapas, dancing, anything we could do to try and mingle around locals. I remember being so carefree and feeling a sense of safety to walk around at night and enjoy these moments with my new group of friends.

 

 


 

Anelsy Pimentel              

Spain: Universidad de Granada, Academic Year 2019-2020             

CSU San Bernardino | Spanish
Email: 005844458@coyote.csusb.edu


What is your favorite travel themed quote? “La vida esta hecha de pequeños momentos" (Life is made of little moments).


What is the best advice regarding study abroad? This is an experience that not many get the chance to do so do it to max.

 


 

Debora Rios       

Spain: Universidad de Granada, Academic Year 2019-2020             

Humboldt State University | International/Global Studies
Email: debrios18@gmail.com


What is the best advice regarding study abroad? If you want something and the opportunity arises to have it then do it. Everything will solve itself along the way but the knowledge you can gain with the opportunity is irreplaceable.


What was your favorite study abroad memory? It was the last day I got to spend with all the people I got to make bonds with. We went to a scenic view on top of a famous mirador and we had a last picnic together as the sun went down. We reminisced about the time we had in the continent and the adventures we had together. It's simple but beautiful.

 


 

Giselle Silva        

Spain: Universidad de Granada, Academic Year 2019-2020             

Sonoma State University | Communication Studies
Email: silvagi@sonoma.edu


What is the best advice regarding study abroad? If study abroad scares you it means it will lead to so much growth.


What is your favorite travel themed quote? "Travel opens your heart, broadens your mind, and fills your life with stories to tell." Paula Bendfeldt

 


 

Gizzel Yanez      

Spain: Universidad de Granada, Academic Year 2019-2020             

San Francisco State University | Comparative Literature
Email: gyanez1@mail.sfsu.edu


What is your favorite travel themed quote? "Travel is never a matter of money but of courage" Paulo Coelho


What is the best advice regarding study abroad? Believe in yourself! You are courageous and brave enough to do go live in a different country for entire year. Don't compare yourself to anyone because everyone comes out of study abrading with their own unique experiences and that it what makes it so special.

 


 

Monica Casillas Campo 

Sweden: Uppsala University, Academic Year 2019-2020  

CSU Northridge | Anthropology
Email: monica.casillas.696@my.csun.edu


What is the best advice regarding study abroad? Just go for it. It will be scary, it will test your mental and emotional state in the beginning, but you’ll learn more about yourself in those months abroad than you will back home. The people you meet, the things you will see will create a new narrative for you. Don’t be afraid of trying new things because at the end of the day you’ll reflect on what you’ve done and think, “I never thought I would do that”.

What is your favorite travel themed quote? "Feel the wind that hits you and hear what direction it takes you. That's when you know where to travel too." Personal friend

 


 

Vanessa Cardenas          

Taiwan: National Taiwan University, Academic Year 2019-2020    

CSU San Bernardino | Psychology
Email: vanessaccardenas7@gmail.com


What was your favorite study abroad memory? New Years. There were no classes that day so my friend and I went to go eat somewhere nice and go see the fireworks at Taipei 101. I remember going to the Taipei 101 early and walking around eating snacks from vendors and looking at all the lights put up. We had found a perfect spot and view of Taipei 101, not to close, not too far. Everyone was gathered around waiting for the countdown to begin. Once the countdown began everyone, including my friend and I started counting down in Chinese and then the fireworks went off. I just remember thinking wow, I'm really here in Taiwan entering the new year, an experience I will always remember.

 


 

Marwin Fernandez         

Taiwan: National Taiwan University, Academic Year 2019-2020    

San Francisco State University | Microbiology
Email: marwinfernandez2@gmail.com


What is your favorite travel themed quote?  "If you're twenty-two, physically fit, hungry to learn and be better, I urge you to travel - as far and as widely as possible. Sleep on floors if you have to. Find out how other people live and eat and cook. Learn from them - wherever you go." Anthony Bourdain


What is the best advice regarding study abroad? Be willing to be uncomfortable. I noticed from my community college, home university, and abroad that the international students tend to stick with one another. I think that is fine because it is necessary to have something comfortable when away from home, but I think it is essential to be uncomfortable and meet the locals and other people. Being uncomfortable is part of the growth process.

 


 

Fiona Devlin      

United Kingdom: Kingston University, Academic Year 2019-2020 

CSU Channel Islands | International Business
Email: fiona.devlin988@myci.csuci.edu


What is your favorite travel themed quote? "Adventure is out there " Up


What is the best advice regarding study abroad? Do not let a little bit of doubt or worry stop them from doing something that will be a once in a lifetime opportunity. Studying abroad will not only make you grow as a person, but it will allow you to become a better version of yourself.

 


 

Gina Bonardi     

United Kingdom: Swansea University, Academic Year 2019-2020 

CSU East Bay | Psychology
Email: gbonardi@horizon.csueastbay.edu


What is the best advice regarding study abroad? Say yes and take the chance to immerse yourself into a foreign culture, step out of your comfort zone, and gain a richer sense of the world. It will be one of the best decisions of your life.


What is your favorite travel themed quote? "I have found out that there ain't no surer way to find out whether you like people or hate them than to travel with them." Mark Twain

 


 

Alexandra Boyle              

United Kingdom: Swansea University, Academic Year 2019-2020 

CSU Chico | Management
Email: aboyle3@mail.csuchico.edu


What is your favorite travel themed quote? "When you explore the world around you, you discover the world within you". Ady Meschke


What is the best advice regarding study abroad? I noticed other study abroad people just getting to know one another. I took the time to get to know all my flatmates that were either Welsh or English and playing on the volleyball team I got to know all the local girls that way too. I felt like I got a true sense of what it would be like to live there and I got to ask as many questions as I wanted to people who have first hand experience. I think it completely changes your perspective from just experiencing it for 10 months, to hearing about it from someone who has lived it their whole life.

 


 

Sara Coy              

United Kingdom: Swansea University, Academic Year 2019-2020 

CSU Channel Islands | Health Science/Health Studies

Email: sara.coy400@myci.csuci.edu


What was your favorite study abroad memory? I went on a rock-climbing trip to Snowdonia. We were in north wales with no cell service and no internet. I went with 25 people and stayed in a big cabin. The weather sucked as it was rainy and stormy all weekend, but we climbed every day in the rain and just had a good time.


What is the best advice regarding study abroad? Take the time now during your college career to visit another country. You will learn about yourself, gain confidence and maturity. Just do it you don’t want to look back and regret not taking the time to visit another country. Lots of students do it from all over the country and the world.

 


 

Samantha Valencia         

United Kingdom: Swansea University, Academic Year 2019-2020 

CSU East Bay | Public Health
Email: svalencia13@horizon.csueastbay.edu


What is the best advice regarding study abroad? Ask a lot of questions, asking questions multiple times is much better than feeling left like you are unsure of what to do. Research the culture of where you are going so you are more familiar with different slang, greetings and customs. Try to connect with someone who is the same major who is or has studied abroad, it would make the biggest difference as they could help you choose the closest classes to yours.


What was your favorite study abroad memory? Cooking in the communal kitchen. We would cook our separate dinners but sit for hours talking about the differences in growing up or different cultural aspects. We would play games together watch movies and teach each other words and slang in our native languages. I think these were the best times I had because we got so much closer to each other this way.

 


 

Joseph Ibarra    

United Kingdom: University of Bradford, Academic Year 2019-2020           

CSU Northridge | Accountancy
Email: joseph.ibarra.565@my.csun.edu

What is your favorite travel themed quote? "Even now I miss Italy dearly, I dream about it every night." - Eila Hiltunen


What is the best advice regarding study abroad? Apply for scholarships because any amount money will help.