Erin Gibbons
Student Ambassador
Email: [email protected]
School:Fairfield University
Cya Term:Summer 2024
Major:Biomedical Engineering
Anticipated Graduation:5/17/2026

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

I had a great experience with CYA; all of the people I met were very nice. (Shout-out to our faculty advisor Poppi who came on our week-long class trip; she was the best!) Studying abroad not only broadened my horizons but also deepened my understanding of history in a way that textbooks never could. Being able to visit historical sites and learn about their significance firsthand was incredibly enriching. Personally, it helped me become more independent and adaptable, navigating a new culture and making lifelong friends from around the world. Academically, the experience exposed me to new perspectives and courses that weren't available at my home university. I hope to share my experience and encourage other students at Fairfield to participate.

How was the political climate in Greece different from what are you used to? If applicable, describe a time when you had to navigate a political conversation during your time abroad.

I would advise prospective students planning to study abroad with CYA to stay open-minded. Enjoy the opportunity to dive into a new culture, meet different people, and try local foods. Lots of my friends kept a journal which I regret not doing. Keeping a journal can help you reflect on your experiences and remember what you did. At the orientation for the program they told us brief information that was helpful regarding tipping and common things we would encounter. Studying abroad with CYA is a life-changing opportunity that enriches your academic, personal, and professional development. Athens is a wonderful place that is full of history and I hope to return soon!

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:

Accessibility, Dietary restrictions, Finances, First-time international traveler, Mental health, Religion, STEM major

Favorite food in Greece?

loukoumades with Nutella and strawberries from Loukoumother's in Athens (12/10)

Favorite class you took at CYA?

Geography of Faith

What extracurricular activities were you involved with in Greece?

I was able to go on lots of the outings with Niki which were fun! We went on a hike and a thrifting trip which were cool unique experiences. Running is one of my favorite hobbies and while I was there I was able to run in the Olympic stadium by CYA multiple times which was an amazing experience! I was studying abroad during the summer session so I wasn't involved in extracurriculars.

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