You may be wondering, just who makes up the Study Abroad Office? The office has a handful of staff who work together to help both incoming and outgoing students at OSU. Today I want to introduce you to one of our Peer Advisors, Mindy. If you’ve walked into the office or gone through the application process to study abroad, you’ve probably encountered a Peer Advisor. As Peer Advisors, we help prospective participants begin the process by directing them to resources like programs, scholarships, websites, etc. We also help promote study abroad on campus by giving presentations about study abroad, and we help keep office resources updated and current.
Mindy Faulkner has been a Peer Advisor since August 2009. Mindy studied at the University of Bamberg for the 2008-2009 Academic Year in Bamberg, Germany through a Reciprocal Exchange program. While at Bamberg, she improved her German language skills and challenged herself by taking courses taught in German. Needless to say, she is now fluent and when she’s not working at the office, she can be found tutoring students in German at University Academic Services.
Here are 14 questions with Mindy…
1. What is something that most people don’t know about you? I eat more cereal than is humanly possible. How many bowls do you eat? It’s beyond bowls at this point…Also, for not being an aviation major, I know more about airplanes and airlines than anyone should.
2. What is your favorite part of being a Peer Advisor? When students turn in their applications. I like seeing where the students get placed and what the most popular places are. I like introducing students to other locations besides the more popular ones.
3. If I were to look inside of your refrigerator, what would I find? Lots of cheese – parmesan, swiss, havarti with dill, feta. Wine. Milk (for my cereal). Juice – cranberry. Chocolate.
4. What is your favorite country to:
a. Go sightseeing? Scandinavian countries – the people are nice, and it’s easy to get around. My favorite country besides Germany is Sweden.
b. Visit in the future? Chile and Japan.
c. Live in one day? Germany
5. What’s one piece of advice you would give students who want to study abroad? Apply to all the scholarships available. There are more than you may think of that not so many people apply to. For example, the foreign language department scholarships.
Also, be open-minded. Don’t be locked in to a specific country. If you’re open-minded about your destination, you can explore other options.
6. If you could be anyone else for a day, who would you be? I’d like to be Kim Cattrall. She just seems so classy and cool. Plus, I’d get to be a character on Sex & the City.
7. To what country/area of the world do you wish more OSU students traveled? Asia (besides Japan) and Africa. Asia is going to play a big role in the future of politics and world events. Students need to be exposed to this part of the world.
8. How did you meet your boyfriend? I met him while studying abroad. My 4th or 5th day in Germany, my tandem partner knew someone who had a car to take us to IKEA. We talked that day, hung out and began dating around Thanksgiving.
9. What’s one of your favorite memories of your year abroad? Thanksgiving. The American students abroad made a Thanksgiving dinner for like 30-35 Erasmus students who had never been to the U.S. or experienced Thanksgiving. Also, Christmas markets in Germany… with memories of spiced wine and gingerbread.
10. I never see you on Skype, do you still use that account? I’m on it all the time. I have it on my phone non-stop. Oh, you have my business account. I’ll have to give you my personal account.
11. There are currently two Peer Advisors in the office. Excluding yourself, who is your favorite Peer Advisor? Alejandra, of course. (aww)
12. What’s the best memory you have of your time as a Peer Advisor? Taking passport photos… But also, my least favorite memories involve taking passport photos of babies. Some students’ questions are classics, like someone asking what continent their country is in or whether they need a (consular) Visa since they already have a MasterCard, etc.
13. On a scale of 1 to 10, how good do you think the Egyptian people are feeling right now? 5 or 6… I think they’re relieved and most of them got what they wanted, but I’m afraid the aftermath may have them somewhat overwhelmed.
14. How do you say “Thanks for reading” in your favorite language? Swedish – Tack för läsning
Thanks Mindy for answering these questions, you’re awesome! Next time you’re in the office, offer her a slice of cheese and a painting of an airplane, and you’ll probably be automatic best friends. Auf wiedersehen everyone 🙂