Study Abroad at Champlain

By  Caitlin Ludke, Psychology and Sarah Steward, Communication Major ’17

Champlain students have the ability to study virtually anywhere in the world. With two international campuses—one in Montreal, Canada, and one in Dublin, Ireland—five global partners (with locations in: Auckland, New Zealand; Buenos Aires, Argentina; Florence, Italy; Ifrane, Morocco; and Shanghai, China) and numerous options through our third-party programs, Champlain makes it easy to see the world while learning how to shape the future.

In fact, the Institute of International Education recently ranked Champlain #12 in the nation for its percentage of students studying abroad among leading colleges and universities. (53% of our students study abroad at some point in their college career!)

We asked a few students what they had to say about studying abroad with Champlain, and this is what they said:

Sarah Steward
Study Abroad Location: Dublin, Ireland*

Sarah by the seaside in Dún Laoghaire, Ireland

Sarah by the seaside in Dún Laoghaire, Ireland!

Studying abroad in Ireland was one of the best things I have ever done. There was always something new and exciting happening in Dublin! During my semester abroad, I not only learned about the people of Ireland but also a lot about myself. In a quick four months, I was able to put on an art event in Dublin, learn how to play Gaelic Football and travel to four beautiful countries. I’m proud that I am able to take those experiences with me everywhere I go. I also feel like I truly was able to immerse myself in the Irish culture through Champlain’s weekend trips, exploring different places around the city and simply talking to the locals.

*At Champlain’s Dublin campus, students get to experience apartment-style living in the heart of Dublin City Centre and are taught by professors from local universities as well as Champlain professors.

Maina Chen
Study Abroad Location: Montreal, Canada*

Maina and her friends “just hanging” in Montreal.

Maina and her friends “just hanging” in Montreal.

Montreal is the happy middle between Burlington and my home, New York City. Burlington is a little quiet for me, which is why I was more than excited to feel a different sort of city life. Montreal is home to an amazingly festive and creative people, the streets are lined with some of the best eateries, graffiti arts and game companies I’ve seen.

Even though I was only two hours away from the main campus, being beyond the border was the push I needed to work towards an independent lifestyle. I worked in an internship, writing for the game company Lucky Hammers. That was groundbreaking for me. One of my favorite parts of being in Montreal was the food culture and gallivanting around marketplaces. I’ve made some fantastic new friendships, acquaintances, and bonded with fellow study-abroad students, too. I’d do it all over again, if I could.

​*In Montreal, students live in University du Quebec a Montreal’s (UQUAM) housing and are taught by faculty from nearby Canadian universities: Concordia University and McGill’s University, along with other industry professionals. ​

Megan Charles
Study Abroad Location: Florence, Italy

Megan kissing the Leaning Tower of Pisa!

Megan kissing the Leaning Tower of Pisa!

Florence is a small city, but there’s so much that goes on there. It’s kind of like Burlington but in another country and a little bit bigger. My favorite class was a sketchbook class in which we walked around Florence sketching piazzas (Italian marketplaces) and visited museums. It was a really great way to see Florence.

The city is comfortable; you get to encounter and befriend so many interesting people, and I even made friends with a local coffee shop owner.

Caitlin Ludke
Study Abroad Location: Townsville, Queensland, Australia

Caitlin with a kangaroo at Featherdale Wildlife Park in Sydney.

Caitlin with a kangaroo at Featherdale Wildlife Park in Sydney.

Studying abroad in Australia allowed me to not only immerse myself in a new culture but also make new friends, explore a beautiful country and build confidence. This is much more than just studying abroad, it’s about finding yourself, experiencing the world first-hand, and making memories that will last forever.  

Dominique Cornacchia
Study Abroad Location: Currently in Buenos Aires

Dominique posing in Colonia Del Sacramento, Uruguay.

Dominique posing in Colonia Del Sacramento, Uruguay.

My time here in Buenos Aires, Argentina, has been an incredible experience. The Cultural Experiences Abroad (CEA) program has taken us on some awesome trips to places outside of the city, such as Tigre Delta, Iguazu Falls and Colonia, Uruguay. My Spanish speaking skills have also improved tremendously while living with my host mother and taking a Spanish Literature class!

Navigating the city was definitely intimidating at first, especially since I’ve lived in Vermont my whole life. But after being here for over two months, taking the subte and colectivos (subway and buses), travel comes easily to me now. I can’t wait to see what else my life as a porteña (someone from Buenos Aires) has in store for the remainder of my fall semester!

Meghan Richards
Study Abroad Location: Auckland, New Zealand

Meghan at Mount Victoria Lookout!

Meghan at Mount Victoria Lookout!

Growing up in Vermont had its perks, but being able to study abroad in a beautiful country like New Zealand was a once in a lifetime opportunity that has changed my life forever. I studied at Auckland University of Technology (AUT), and I met some incredible students from New Zealand and other countries around the world. While I was there, I also had the chance to visit Fiji and Australia.  After these travel experiences, I have decided to someday work for a nonprofit organization in hopes of providing third world countries, such as Fiji, with clean water. I’m thankful to have studied abroad, but i’m even more thankful for the ways in which it has opened my eyes to issues that exist worldwide.

Emily Rice
Study Abroad Location: Shanghai, China

Emily at the Forbidden City in Beijing, China.

Emily at the Forbidden City in Beijing, China.

I was pushed to live in a way that was challenging but rewarding. Many assumptions of mine were challenged, not to mention the challenge of commuting on the subway in a city of 35 million people! Honestly though, without those challenges, I wouldn’t be able to sit here today and say I truly appreciate what we have here in the western world.

Living in Shanghai, China, this summer has changed my life. The Freeman Foundation Grant* provided not just me, and my student peers who also studied abroad in Shanghai, the ability to learn in ways a classroom just cannot teach. And for that, I am beyond grateful.

*The Freeman Grant provides Robert P. Stiller School of Business students a stipend towards expenses that normally come along with studying abroad or having a summer internship in China.  

Julian Lopez
Study Abroad Location: China

Julian standing on the Great Wall of China.

Julian standing on the Great Wall of China.

Time flies when you study abroad at two different universities in Shanghai, China, and travel to eight countries in Southeast Asia! I studied abroad in China with the intention of understanding the culture, learning from the locals, improving my fluency in Mandarin and continuing my education. All of these experiences helped me differentiate myself from other job applicants in Vermont and get my sixth internship at an investment firm in the city of Burlington. It is hard to try to put into words everything that I learned in over a year in Asia, but if there is one way to describe it, I would say the following: studying abroad is worth more than a thousand books.

Champlain prides itself on helping its students become engaged global citizens and creates opportunities for our students to incorporate studying abroad in their education. Study abroad provides a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for you to immerse yourself in a new culture and explore a new country. And college is the perfect time to experience it. Find out more about study abroad and Champlain’s Office of International Education. Go see the world while you learn how to change it.

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