Alumni Spotlight: Christy Finney


Christy Finney is currently studying to be a physical therapist and loves fitness, anything outdoors, and breaking out the casual random dance move! Joy and peanut butter are two of her favorite things to spread. She also loves Jesus and live so free because of Him!!

Why did you pick this program?

I choose New Zealand to study for the vast opportunity of travel and study it has. I love the mountains and beaches, and within an hours drive you can have both. It is a country of adventure and I found that to be true for the time I spent there.

What do you tell your friends who are thinking about going abroad?

Stop hesitating and just go! You never know what is out there until you go. Fear and excuses may flood your mind, but the adventures and stories you gain, the life lessons you learn, and the relationships you build are unlike any other.

What is one piece of advice you'd give to someone going on your program?

Get involved and get the most you can out of your experience, because it does have an end! Do something you have never done before and meet locals! And most of all, let yourself live. Be emotional and sad but also remember that this is a time that can be so full of joy and fun as well!

What's your favorite story to tell about your time abroad?

I could go on and on in this category, but one story I tend to come back to was during the second week of my NZ experience. Long story short: six of my new friends and I went on a hike and got lost in the dark. A storm came, and we had no choice but to fit in a two person tent for the night; let me remind you that there were 7 of us total, now squeezed into a 2 person tent! However, when most people would view that as one of the most awful situations you could find yourself in, it was one of the most rewarding and hilarious experiences of my life. I truly made a family that night.

Christy's thoughts on budget travel:

You can make travel as inexpensive or expensive as you want. You can find so many free or super inexpensive things to do: hiking insane terrain, going to beaches, markets, random hot springs or waterfalls, and live entertainment... staying in hostels, finding SUPER deals on car rentals - all a part of the experience that I would never take back.