Meet our Peer Advisors

Meet The Study Abroad peer advisors


Maria Carson

Maria Carson, Ireland, 2016.

From: Battle Creek, MI

Major: occupational therapy.

I spent 2 weeks in Ireland on a pre-freshman, faculty-led study abroad in 2016.
"My decision to study abroad was one of the best decisions I’ve made in my life. Ireland was a place I knew I always wanted to travel to, because of this study abroad I was finally able to see this place in person. Even though this trip was short I learned a lot about myself and I was really pushed out of my comfort zone. I definitely want go again, and for longer this time!" 


Amyre Dennis

Amyre Dennis, China, 2015.

From: Kalamazoo, MI

Major: global and international studies (anthropology and East Asian focus)

"Study abroad was something I have always wanted to do. I love the thought of learning in another country other than my own. I studied Chinese language and culture in Beijing, China. I have been interested in Chinese culture since I was a child and I knew that if I really wanted to learn how to speak Chinese I should go to China! Study abroad has given me confidence. I had never felt so complete until I went to Beijing. Sure, it was scary at first but I am a better person for it. In China I realized that I wanted to be in the museum science field and that is what I will use my major for. Study abroad has given me life long friendships and a second home. I am ready for the world because I know a few more people in it."









Lauren LaLonde

Lauren LaLonde, Spain, 2017.

From: Portage, MI

Majors: Spanish secondary education, global international studies.

I have studied abroad in Ireland as part of a summer II faculty-led program on Colonialism and Terrorism in 2016 and in Spain during a summer II language-intensive program.

"Studying abroad was something that I always had in mind, and once I actually did it, it was everything I had hoped for and more! Though it challenges you and pushes you out of your comfort zone, you learn so much from it, and I honestly think it has helped shape me into who I am. I encourage every single student to give it a try, I truly believe that this is the best experience you can have while in college. While I love short-term travel, it is a completely different experience to be living on your own and taking classes in a foreign country (and a better one in my opinion)! Some of the best memories of my life so far have been while studying abroad, and I can't wait to see where I go next!"





Madeline Reeves                                                              

Madeline Reeves, Australia, 2018


From: Grand Rapids, MI

Major: Psychology

I spent five months living and studying in Sydney, Australia at Macquarie University. My time abroad was one of the best experiences I have ever had! I chose Australia for its natural beauty, and Sydney specifically for all the sights and activities it offered as a cosmopolitan city. I loved being able to live somewhere that provided opportunities to explore and learn about new things every day. Living with Australians and making forever friends was also an amazing opportunity. I truly got to know and understand the country and its culture through these friends, and I now have yet a reason to go back and visit them all someday! If you are even thinking about considering study abroad, I would say go for it. I have grown in so many ways, and am so happy that I took the chance and explored the world outside of the US for a semester!





Christopher Van Meter

Christopher Van Meter, Germany 2014-15.

From: Commerce Township, MI

Majors: Aviation Flight Science, Aviation Management, German.

"I studied German language for a full academic year in the town of Tübingen, Germany. The year I spent abroad was the most transformative year of my life, not only with respect to my mastery of German, but also in regards to personal development. After I was left to my own devices in a foreign country, I became better equipped to cope with situations of adversity that might come my way. I had always enjoyed being challenged throughout my academic career, but the challenge of escaping the bonds of my comfort zone was the most rewarding to overcome. Although the program seemed extremely daunting in the beginning, I was able to not only survive but thrive in the environment, and the feeling of accomplishment that resulted from my success fuels my ambitions of entering an aviation career in Germany."