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Paulina Flasch: Graduating IPC Graduate Assistant
Paulina Flasch, an international masters student in the UNCG Counseling program, from Lund, Sweden, is graduating this December. She has been working as a graduate assistant at IPC for two-and-a-half years. Her primary responsibility during her time at IPC has been to help Tom Martinek, Jr. (Assistant Director of Study Abroad and Exchange) develop the Curriculum Integration Project (CIP) which aims to integrate study abroad opportunities into all departments by working with key faculty to create departmental advising sheets that are then readily available to all faculty.
During July and August of 2011, she was also the Counselor-in-residence for the German-American Fulbright Summer Institute at UNCG. One of her favorite parts about working at IPC has been the close-knit community atmosphere. “IPC is such a warm, amazing place to work,” she said. “I love the international spirit here. I really feel connected with the rest of the world.” She has also enjoyed seeing CIP come together and the difference it has made in students’ lives. In addition to traveling between Sweden and the US over the past twelve years, Paulina also studied abroad during the summer of 2011 in San Jose, Costa Rica, as part of the Global Perspectives in Counseling program. During her time there, she worked with people living in poverty in San Jose, particularly refugees from Nicaragua. She participated in various service projects as well, including helping to renovate schools and build bunk beds and roads. She lived with a host family, with whom she still keeps in touch.
In the future, Paulina hopes to pursue a career as a counselor, either with a community agency or a private practice, working with individuals, families, and couples. She also wants to continue to travel and grow as a global citizen. Paulina wants to thank everyone at IPC for the opportunities they have given her, and she says she will miss her IPC family very much.
Sarah Pickett: Graduating IPC Intern
Sarah Pickett, a senior Business Administration major at UNCG, is one of our Fall 2012 undergraduate interns for Study Abroad and Exchange (SAE). During her time at UNCG, she has developed a specific interest in student affairs, and worked as a Resident Advisor (RA) for UNCG Housing and Residence Life during her sophomore, junior, and spring semester of her senior year. After studying abroad at Mannheim University in Mannheim, Germany during Fall Semester 2011, she became interested in student affairs on a more international scale, which inspired her to work at IPC. As an SAE intern, she works primarily with Kaitlin Ritchie (Incoming Exchange Coordinator), and her duties include processing new exchange student applications and assisting with orientation preparation. Her favorite part about working at IPC is her involvement in community programming, which includes recruiting exchange students to give presentations about their home countries and cultures at both UNCG and local elementary schools. “While planning these presentations, I get to interact really closely with the international students, so I get to learn a lot about their cultures,” she said.
In addition to interning at IPC, Sarah also works as a volunteer with Amanda Pelon, Coordinator for International Student Services and Lecturer at the Bryan School of Business, helping to recruit students in the Bryan School to study abroad. Her own time abroad reshaped her global perspective, and she wants to encourage others to experience life abroad.
After graduating, she plans to apply to graduate school to study international student affairs, and she is considering pursuing a career in career counseling. She says her time as an intern has definitely helped prepare her for the road ahead. Specifically, it has helped hone her communication skills, both with fellow staff members and the international students she works with. More travels are also in her future: in addition to returning to Germany and visiting Australia, she also wants to visit Turkey.Danny Gobel: Graduating IPC Intern
Senior Danny Gobel, a Communications Studies major at UNCG, has been one of the Fall 2012 undergraduate interns for Study Abroad and Exchange (SAE). He wanted to work at IPC after studying abroad at the University of Jyvӓskylӓ in Jyvӓskylӓ, Finland. He chose to study in Finland because he had fallen in love with the Finnish folk song “Ievan Polkka,” as performed by Finnish quartet Loituma.
Danny was inspired by his experiences abroad to help international students at UNCG make the most of their own study abroad experience. In addition to working with international students and UNCG students going abroad, Danny has been busy organizing group events and trips—both with IPC and on his own—to give international students a sampling of many different facets of American life and culture. He has taken groups of international students to Boone, Raleigh, Wilmington, the North Carolina Zoo, a rooftop party at Studio B in downtown Greensboro, and even a burlesque show. “I want to help inspire a love of different cultures,” he said. For Halloween, he also helped IPC put together a Zombie Movie Night in Sullivan 101, a screening of two of the best-known zombie classics, Night of the Living Dead and Dawn of the Dead. This “double creature feature” turned out to be a huge success. Danny has also made himself available as a resource for international students in need. For example, he has volunteered to meet nearly eighty incoming international students at the airport over the course of his involvement with IPC. As far as future plans go, Danny has several. Academically, he hopes to earn a master’s degree in “Empathy in a Cross-Cultural Context,” a major of his own design, then go on to earn a PhD. He also sees himself opening a combination tea shop-and-hostel, which would function as a multi-cultural hub, hosting performances, artists, festivals, and other cultural experiences for and by its patrons. His favorite parts about working at IPC have been interacting with international students and the friendly, accepting atmosphere. “It’s like a family here,” he said, “And I really feel like we’re all doing something important.”
Sherronda Brown: Graduating UNCEP Student Employee
Sherronda has been working for the UNC Exchange Program (UNCEP) since Fall 2009. Her primary responsibilities have been to manage the front desk and to process applications for outgoing and incoming study abroad and exchange students from all sixteen universities in the UNC system. She chose to work at UNCEP because she understands the importance of studying abroad and gaining an international perspective. “Though I’ve never studied abroad, I know it is a life-changing experience, and I want to help other students realize their dreams of living and studying in another country.” Her favorite part about working for UNCEP has been meeting people from other countries and learning about cultures different from her own.
As far as future plans go, she is applying to the Women’s and Gender Studies Master’s Program. She also wants to travel. “I plan someday to teach English abroad. Maybe somewhere like Argentina,” she said. She also hopes to visit Rome, Greece, and Ireland.
We wish Sherronda the best in her future endeavors!