Alexa Carrington, Middlebury School in China: Hangzhou
Wellesley College ’19
Major: Chinese Language and Culture
Minor: Cinema and Media Studies
I love learning languages, and for six years I’ve been fixated on learning Mandarin – challenging as all get out, but so rewarding at the same time. I previously spent two summers in China studying the language, so I can attest to what an impact a completely immersive language environment can make upon one’s language learning. And really, how much more immersive can you get than learning, studying, and speaking Chinese in China?As the saying goes, “上有天堂，下有苏杭” (“up above there is paradise, down here there are Suzhou and Hangzhou”); I have been to Suzhou, so I’ve got high hopes for all that Hangzhou has to offer in terms of history, natural beauty, and cuisine, among many other aspects. I can’t wait to spend a semester exploring Hangzhou and soaking up as much Mandarin as I possibly can. Oh, and the easy access to baozi and dumplings sure doesn’t hurt, either. I look forward to sharing photos of my experience living and learning in Hangzhou!
Amanda Luthy, CET Film Production in Prague
American University ‘19
Major: Film and Media Arts
Minor: Literature: Cinema Studies
Ever since my sister attended two study abroad programs throughout her time at university, I have been waiting for my opportunity to do the same. After hearing about CET’s Film Production program my freshmen year, I could not resist such an opportunity. Not only would the program allow me to live in one of the most beautiful cities in the world and learn the rich culture of the Czech people, but it would elevate my skills in filmmaking and storytelling. Learning from professional filmmakers, making friends from across the globe who share my passion, developing greater insight into the world of cinema all while exploring an enchanting country I’ve never imagined living in? Sign me up!
Anna Dolliver, CET Taiwan
University of Texas ’19
Major: English and Chinese
Hello! I am Anna, a Chinese and English double major at the University of Texas pursuing a certificate in creative writing. As an avid writer, artist, and student, I enjoy researching, writing stories, and asking questions. I spent my summer in Tainan, studying Chinese through through the Taiwan US Alliance program. I am thrilled to improve my language proficiency, serve as an intern, and explore Taipei through CET Taiwan! In addition to being a CET student correspondent, I will continue writing and drawing for my personal blog at www.talesoftaiwan.com.
Chloe Chang, CET Shanghai
George Washington University ’19
Major: International Affairs and Peace Studies
Hi, I’m Chloe Chang and I am a junior at the George Washington University in Washington, DC. I was born in New York City, but now live in New Jersey. I am Taiwanese-Chinese American with immigrant parents from Taiwan. I chose to study abroad in Shanghai because of my love of big cities and my desire to improve my Mandarin and understand my heritage better. My grandfather was born and raised in a city outside of Shanghai called Ningbo and I have always wanted to visit that town and Shanghai because of how I was grown up with Shanghainese influences. While I grew up in a Chinese household, I was very much Americanized and ironically, I have been studying French for 15 years and my fluency transcends that of my Chinese. I chose CET for its reputation in language instruction and the constant praise I heard from my fellow classmates and friends. In Shanghai I am excited to do two things: eat and photograph. I personally love cooking, baking and most importantly, eating. My love of photography will probably lend to many photos about food. But I also love taking photos of people, especially locals and finding those unique, out of sight corners and alleys in Shanghai. My passion for human rights has also led me to intern with Stepping Stones, a non-profit in Shanghai that teaches English to disadvantaged migrant children. I will be working as a research intern and I am so excited to be working with their office. When I return home to Washington, DC for the Spring Semester, I will be interning with the US State Department’s Trafficking in Persons Office. I hope that I will be able to tell the story of the people I meet during my time abroad and that you will share this journey with me.
Elena Sinagra, CET Siena
Sarah Lawrence College ’19
Major: History and Environmental Studies
My name is Elena Sinagra and I am a junior at Sarah Lawrence College. I study History and Environmental Studies. I have had a long interest in Italian Culture and History and Siena seemed like such a perfect city to study in. I look forward to seeing Italy’s museums and cultural sights through out the year!
Eliza Singleton, CET Prague
Elon University ’19
Major: Strategic Communications and Political Science
Studying Abroad has always been a dream of mine but if you had asked me three years ago where I wanted to study abroad, the Czech Republic was definitely not on my list. However as I got older the idea of challenging myself in a city like Prague (which is the complete opposite from the small town I’m from) seemed intriguing in the best way possible. The lively city combined with the unique classes CET offers makes this program a perfect fit for me. I am looking forward to exploring the city and hopefully getting to know some of the locals. I’m also looking forward to trying new cuisines, especially fried cheese.
Hannah Caspar-Johnson, Middlebury School in China: Kunming
Georgetown University ’19
Minor: Chinese and economics
Originally from Delaware, I’m a rising junior at Georgetown University in Washington, D.C., where I’m majoring in anthropology and minoring in Chinese and economics. In choosing Kunming, I was looking for a city with an exciting culture and history call home for the next four months. I look forward to learning about the different groups of people that live in Kunming and exploring the city’s parks and neighborhoods. As an avid tea drinker (and slight caffeine addict), I’m also especially excited to drink my way through Kunming’s tea houses!
James Michael Sapp, CET Jordan
The University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill ’19
Major- History, Arabic Culture
I have worked a lot with education, and when working with children it is so important to develop a connection. However, it can often be hard if their is a language barrier. I plan on going into education and I would like to be able to connect and communicate with a wide variety of students. I chose CET because I wanted to be fully immersed in the language and culture of Jordan and improve my language skills. I look forward to the challenge of communicating strictly in Arabic while abroad. I am most looking forward to diving into a new city. I love exploring new places, trying new food, and getting to know the local residents.
Madeline Titus, UW in India
School: American University
Major: International Studies
I have always wanted to go to India, and when I found out about the UW India program I immediately was interested. Mahatma Gandhi stated that “A nation’s culture resides in hearts and souls of its people”. I’m most looking forward to meeting my host family, program staff and classmates, but also those I encounter throughout my time there.
Michael Young, CET Harbin
Washington State University ’19
Major: Chinese and Japanese
I’m a student at Washington State University, Majoring in both Chinese and Japanese, with minors in Spanish and French. My name is Michael Young. I was borne in Colorado, and I’ve always had a great love for Chinese Culture. Since I was little I would write pretend characters and dress up in blankets acting as though I were a great Chinese Emperor. Now my dream of going to China is becoming a reality. I’m studying Intensive Chinese in the city of Harbin for 10 months. Come along with me as I take this life hanging journey into the land of my childhood dreams-China!
Morgan Ryan, CET Siena
University of Virginia ’20
I am a second year at the University of Virginia. I currently do not have a declared major; however, I am planning to major in Media Studies with a minor in Studio Art. I recently picked up photography as just a personal, fun hobby and as a way to relieve my stress. During most of my free time I love to be around loved ones. Also during my free time I like pictures of nature, people, and architecture. I plan to definitely include those three aspects in my photos while I am abroad to really capture my experience as well as my fellow peers’ experiences. Italy’s culture, atmosphere and architecture all fascinate me and I am extremely stoked to be able to immerse myself into CET’s Siena program.
Paige Carlin, CET Prague
Elon University ’19
Major: Strategic Communications and International Studies
I chose to study abroad in Prague through CET Academic Programs because I wanted to learn more about the history and culture of central Europe, a region I’ve concentrated my studies on at my home university. As an adventure enthusiast, I’ve always valued the ability to share my experiences with others through writing.
Roxana Padilla, CET Florence
Cornell University ‘19
Major: Plant Science
Hi all! I chose to spend my semester abroad with CET Florence because of the opportunity they provide for any student to study and immerse themselves in the Italian language, culture, and arts – regardless of their major. This program gives anyone the chance to step out of their comfort zone and see the world from a different perspective. In between all of the incredible people and experiences I hope to have and document my first time abroad, I’ll also be touching on how I balance budgeting, travel, academics, and homesickness in a foreign country. Overall, I can’t wait to expand my worldview and explore everything Firenze and Italy has to offer, from the floral biodiversity, the music scene, the nightlife, and all the (vegetarian) cuisine!
Stephanie Jamilla, CET Vietnam
George Washington University
Major: International Affairs
As an International Affairs major with concentrations in Development and Environmental Studies, along with having a regional interest in Southeast Asia, CET Vietnam seemed like perfect study abroad program for me. I’m looking forward to studying development in a developing country rather than just from textbooks back in the US. Another reason why I was drawn to the program was because of its service learning component. What better way to truly engage with the city than to work with its people? Last but not least, it’s my personal mission to try all the street food in Ho Chi Minh City.
Talya Phelps, CET Prague Film
Vassar College ’19
I like to find and create art wherever I can, and what better place to do so than in Prague—from collaborating on a brand new piece of cinema to enjoying latte art in the cafes I’ve heard so much about. Even if I can’t squeeze my recorders and flute into my luggage, I’m looking forward to being closer to the hometowns of the Baroque composers whose music I’ve been playing for 11 years. Coming from a town where a procession of cows crossing the road made me late to school more than once, I welcome a broader perspective on art—both in my own efforts and as a larger concept. As a blogger, I will do my best to create art from my experiences through the medium I’ve always felt most at home with: writing. Putting my experiences into words will encourage me not only to notice the beauty around me, but also to seek out opportunities to learn, and I’m thrilled to begin that quest.
Taylor Ginter, CET Harbin
Rice University ‘18
Major: Asian Studies
This fall semester will actually be my second time participating in a CET program: I also spent this summer in Harbin! Two months of study abroad just wasn’t long enough, so I can’t wait for another four months of following a language pledge. Because I was born and raised in the Sonoran Desert of Tucson, Arizona, I’m 50% excited for and 50% terrified for Harbin’s infamous winter, but look forward to Harbin’s colorful Ice and Snow Festival.
Tessa Carreiro, CET Florence
Brandeis University ’19
I chose the CET Florence because I can’t imagine a better way to start off my college years than a semester in a city so rich with culture and history. I’m so excited to be able to take my education outside of the classroom and fully emerge myself in the Italian culture and language. From the field trips to famous works of art to bicycle rides in the country side, this semester will be packed with once in a lifetime opportunities. As a student who is Italian, it is so interesting to see the city that my family has come from. I hope to take these memories (and of course photographs) with me throughout the rest of my life.
Liz Drayna, UW in India
UW Madison ’19
I was born and raised in Wisconsin, and I chose to spend my semester in Varanasi because I wanted to expose myself to an environment as different from my upbringing as possible! Interests include writing, art, and politics, and I hope to include a healthy dose of each in my blog posts!
Rina Lindenmayer, CET Japan
Soka University of America ’19
Major: Liberal Arts
The location of the program is what drew me most to CET Osaka. I have heard so much about the depth of culture, especially in food, of Osaka that it made me want to see for myself what the city has to offer. I am also interested in the different Japanese dialects, so it is a great way to challenge myself with learning a kind of Japanese that is not usually taught in classrooms back at home. Although I grew up with Japanese culture, I’m most excited to experience it first-hand and see the differences between what I know and what I will learn while living and traveling in Japan. I look forward to embracing this amazing opportunity and soaking in every experience in Osaka!