She'd never seriously considered spending her summer in another country, but senior Alysha White became a first-generation international traveler when she listened to the enthusiasm of her business professors and signed up for what has become one of the "best experiences" of her life.
White, 22, recently returned from a month-long trip to Europe, where she and a group of PSU students studied international business at the University of La Rochelle in La Rochelle, France. The first trip arranged between the College of Business and La Rochelle (one of PSU's partner schools), the study abroad trip gave White and her peers a chance to learn about business from a whole new perspective.
"I got to see international business instead of just read about it," said White, whose minor is marketing. "It made a huge difference for me. The cultures are so different, especially in business practices, and I know I'll apply what I learned to my future career."
The experience made such an impression on White that as soon as she returned she began researching graduate programs in international marketing. With the hope of returning to France, she's even considering enrolling at La Rochelle, where a new master's program is being created.
"The trip was full of real-life experience," she said, recalling a story of losing her train ticket in the subway and having to negotiate in broken French for another.
"When it comes to different languages and customs, I think a lot of students are afraid of the unknown. But you just have to dive in headfirst and let yourself learn how to travel and budget and be independent. There's something about going out and seeing the world that changes you and your outlook on everything."