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Meet the Study Abroad Bloggers for the 2019-2020 Academic Year

From Dijon to Cameroon, Holy Cross students explore the globe and blog about their life-changing experiences along the way.
October 2nd, 2019 by 

A train crosses a bridge in the Scottish highland
Zhenxi Qi '16 took this photo of a train crossing the Scottish highland while studying abroad at the University of St. Andrews in Scotland. The photo received honorable mention in the 2015 Study Abroad Photo Contest. Photo by Zhenxi Qi '16

In 2018, College of the Holy Cross ranked  No. 2 among baccalaureate colleges in the United States for long-term study abroad participation by the Institute of International Education. It’s not the first time the College has been on the list; in the past ten years, Holy Cross has stayed in the top three.

With 59 study abroad programs and 29 host countries around the globe, Holy Cross students have innumerable opportunities to expand their horizons through immersive study abroad experiences.

See what it’s like to live and learn in a different culture through blogs written by students currently immersed in countries far and wide.

Matthew Kennelly ’21
Matthew Kennelly '22 stands on Stein Bridge

Hometown: Garden City, New York

Areas of study: International studies major

Studying abroad at: The University of Jordan in Amman, Jordan

Why Jordan? “I’ve always felt that learning and achieving fluency in Arabic is a great way to create exciting professional and post-graduate opportunities. By truly immersing myself in the language and the culture, I hope to do just that. Also, Amman is a vibrant city with a rich history and plenty to do!”

Read Matthew’s blog.

Hui Li ’21
Hui Li '21 stands for a photo in front of O'Kane Hall

Hometown: Boston, Massachusetts

Areas of study: Classics and psychology double major

Studying abroad at: Temple University in Rome, Italy

Why Italy? “I’ve been fascinated by the ancient Mediterranean since I took my first Latin class in middle school. I love learning about the ancient Greeks, Romans and the cultures they interacted with. I’m excited to expand my studies in Rome, examining not only the remnants of the ancient world I focus on in my Classics courses, but also the entire city and how its modern structures and culture have changed over time since its beginnings in antiquity.”

Read Hui’s blog.

Grace Manning ’21
Grace Manning '21 stands in front of Beaven Hall

Hometown: Enniskerry, Ireland

Areas of study: English and French double major with a concentration in peace and conflict studies

Studying abroad at: L’Université Catholique d’Afrique Centrale in Yaoundé, Cameroon

Why Cameroon? “My Montserrat class introduced me to the diverse and fascinating history, culture and languages that exist in Africa. I wanted the chance to continue to explore these aspects of Africa in Cameroon, where I will be able to improve and develop my French language skills, as well. ”

Read Grace’s blog.

Jacob McDonald ’21
Jacob McDonald '21 stands on Stein Bridge

Hometown: Paxton, Massachusetts

Areas of study: Computer science and French double major

Studying abroad at: Université de Bourgogne in Dijon, France

Why France? “Having studied French language and culture for nearly eight years, I felt as though my academic experience in French would not suffice having only learned about it in the classroom. I find that immersing myself in a new world and seeing what life is like outside of the United States is crucial to comprehending another culture.”

Read Jacob’s blog.

Kate McLaughlin ’21
Kate McLaughlin '21 stands in front of Fenwick Hall

Hometown: Pelham, New York

Areas of study: History and Spanish double major

Studying abroad at: Universidade da Coruña in A Coruña, Spain

Why Spain? “Ever since I started studying Spanish in middle school, I have been humbled by all of the people and experiences it has allowed me to encounter. I believe that the best way to broaden your perspective is to have a conversation with someone who has had very different life experiences than you have, and I am thrilled to have the opportunity to have more of these kinds of conversations in Spain.”

Read Kate’s blog.

Sarah Shorter ’21
Sarah Shorter '21 stands on the stairs of Dinand Library

Hometown: Lexington, Massachusetts

Areas of study: Anthropology major with a concentration in Latin America, Latinx, and Caribbean studies

Studying abroad at: Pontificia Universidad Catòlica del Perú in Lima, Peru

Why Peru? “I knew that I wanted to study abroad, but I wasn’t entirely sure where, at first. My Montserrat course was about Latin American film and art, and it got me particularly interested in Latin America. Combined with my interest in the Spanish language and anthropology, Peru seemed like the perfect location for me to enhance my understanding of Latin America and its people, as well as hone my Spanish language skills and anthropological perspective.”

Read Sarah’s blog.

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