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Programs and Reviews
Panrimo is a company born of a friendship established between co-founders Paul and Tony while studying at Western Michigan University. Because of their mutual interests in travel, seeing new places, and the desire to avoid a monotonous college life, Paul and Tony put their heads together to come up with "Panrimo." Described as "an odd name for a serious decision," it salutes both Pangea (yes, the super connected super continent!) and the Latin word for explore, "rimo," thus denoting their underlying message- travel better, in a world that's connected better.
Panroamer alumni are guaranteed lifetime admittance into the Panrimo Travel Club - this includes access to free airport pick up in Panrimo's host countries, access to Panrimo coordinators in partner cities, letters of recommendation from the founders, visa and passport assistance, international travel advice, and access to Panrimo's excursions and cultural immersion activities - for life!
I recently caught up with one of Panrimo's co-founders, Tony Schepers. A lover of jazz music and the Spanish language, Tony managed to study abroad 3 times in his undergraduate career. His business-minded approach to study abroad started at the mere age of 20, when he designed, implemented, and ran a new program for 8 of his college peers in Spain. When he's not writing clever posts on Panrimo's blog, he's off scouting out the next ideal Panrimo study abroad'er, lovingly dubbed "panroamer."
What are the core principles that Panrimo strives to achieve?Tony: Intimate service, personal programming, guaranteed credit, small programs, and adventure! We truly want our students to go out and explore, and expect the unexpected. If a student chooses to go abroad through their own university or a typical third party provider, they're going to get what is promised. Panrimo takes it a step further: not only do we promise what you see on paper but so much more - Panrimo's overseas coordinators will invite students into their home for dinner, will bring them to operas, will introduce them to their local friends, will take them on boating trips down the Seine River. These are things you simply cannot do if you have 300 students abroad.
We want to know who you are. We provide interested students with an intimate, 10-question questionnaire that pulls at the heart of each Panroamer, which serves as a base for the beginning of the program customization process. Panrimo not only guarantees a personality in the advisor the student is assigned, but a truly personalized and personal experience overseas.
What separates Panrimo from other study abroad program providers?
Tony: I simply pose this question to every college student interested in studying abroad: do you want to be a number in a group or do you want your interests to be known, utilized, and brought to you in experiences overseas you cannot get anywhere else? If you study photography and are interested in studying in Florence, and you love basilicas, what would you do with two tickets for a Mozart tribute concert at the Via Morano basilica with your camera? If you're a journalist studying in Prague, what could you do with a 4 hour session with a Czech writer in a coffee shop? Where else will you find guaranteed unique experiences crafted with YOU in mind?
It is truly personalized experiences such as these that make Panrimo stand out as the optimal choice for the student interested in maximizing their growth during their time spent abroad.
A Panroamer - can you better define?
Tony: A dreamer of lemon gelato in Florence, a cyclist through the French Alps, decision maker of your own life experiences, truth seeker of temples and Buddha in Beijing, lover of a caring host family or wicked apt. in downtown Lyon, dancer of 2 a.m. tango, intern hopeful in business marketing in Czech Republic, seeker of adventurous excursions, pizza parlor paisano's new friend in Sicily, or a friend of a friend wanting to study or intern abroad. Panroamers become part of an international club.
What does the future hold for Panrimo?
Tony: We are not going after 5000 students a year: not everyone can be a Panroamer, and we do not accept everybody. It takes a special type of particular person to be in our club. We simply hope to generate interest among students for our type of programs - the type that caters to their every intellectual desire and motivation for studying abroad. If a student attends a study abroad fair, returns to their dorm with 10 catalogs for study abroad, each with great photos and okay prices, and feels more and more keen to be in South America or Europe or Asia next semester, we want them to choose Panrimo, actually, ONLY choose Panrimo, because they have their own best interests in mind.
Where would you choose to study abroad again if you had the chance?
Tony: While I would love to return to Buenos Aires again for the 5th/6th/7th time, I think I would instead choose Lyon in France, largely because I have yet to go there. I will always favor traveling somewhere new solely for adventure's sake. That, and I hear the food is good.
I really admire Tony's ambitions for re-defining the typical study abroad experience. He's definitely won my interest in joining this international club - I wonder if I'm cut out for this panroaming business? I like gelato! And my tango's not so bad.
Panrimo offers opportunities for personal growth through unparalleled experiences. With Panrimo Customized Study and Intern Abroad Programs, you'll understand and love life overseas because you created the experience.