Erika Schneible
Student Ambassador

Email: [email protected]
School: University of Rochester
Cya Term: Summer 2022
Major: Religion & International Relations
Anticipated Graduation: 5/14/2023

Based on your experience with CYA, what are some of the benefits of spending a semester or summer abroad? How has studying abroad contributed to your personal, academic, and professional development?

The biggest benefit to studying abroad for me was having the experience of learning about a new culture and its history while being directly immersed in it. My experience here in Greece was the epitome of “hands-on learning”, and I loved every minute of it. This was enriching not just for my academic studies, but also pushed me outside of my comfort zone in a personal sense. I loved feeling challenged to meet new people from different cultures and trying to communicate in a new language. In all three aspects of development, studying abroad opened me up to a more global mode of being, both within myself and in relation to others.

What advice do you have for prospective students who are interested in or planning to study abroad with CYA?

My advice would to be to remain open-minded (if you’re studying abroad, you must already be anyways!) and to be kind to yourself through the process of adjusting. As beautiful as living somewhere new can be, it’s not always easy and that should be expected and is okay. The best thing that I think any student abroad can be is adaptable, and part of what comes with that adaptability is having a sense of patience for both yourself and others.

please select any of the following that apply to you, and that you would be willing to share about your CYA experience with other students:

LGBTQ student, Finances while abroad, Religion while abroad

Briefly describe a cultural experience you had that was significant to you in any way.

on a class trip to the Meteora Monasteries, we learned about the rich religious history there. I remember our professor telling us that during World War 2, it was a site of resistance against the Nazi invasion, with monks from the monastery quite literally fighting their invaders off. We also learned of how the monks and nuns have an explicit memory dating back hundreds of years of all of their predecessors who once lived there. It was quite touching to me to know how deeply of a sense of community and resistance they have always had, as well as such an intricate form of historical memory.

Favorite food in Greece?

either dolmades or pastitsio

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