Staff Spotlight: Elissa Gregory

Study Abroad Administrator

What is your favorite travel memory?

A cruise up the coast of Norway past the Arctic Circle and dog sledding with Huskies in Tromso where there was an ice hotel. I got to experience the Aurora Borealis. It really was a once in lifetime experience and one of the incredible natural wonders of the world that I feel so very fortunate to have experienced.

How have you changed/grown since working for your current company?

It’s been fantastic to work directly with students to really do all we can to have a positive impact on the student experience. When we took our JSA and ISU Spring semester students to Paris; this was the last trip I attended with them before they returned to their hometowns back in the USA. It was gorgeous to see how much they had grown both as individuals and bonded as a group since I first met them at the beginning of the semester. We work really hard to create bespoke programs for our students and it’s great fun and it’s given me a real passion for the service that we provide.

What is the best story you've heard from a return student?

A student described how she never felt like she fit in anywhere at home, but felt a sense of belonging here in Brighton. She learned a lot about herself on the program and could now get a sense and see the direction of where her life was going. She felt like Brighton was her second home and couldn’t wait to return and hopefully move here one day!

If you could go on any program that your company offers, which one would you choose and why?

I think the Summer program would be really fun. Students are here during the best part of the year with the weather and when it’s hot the vibe is great in Brighton. The program is jam-packed with activities and as student teachers, you would get to experience a wide range of various, fantastic schools that make up our school system, from independent forest schools to SEN schools and of course mainstream schools who we have spent many years building a partnership with. Schools love having students from the USA.

What makes your company unique? When were you especially proud of your team?

We’re a very small team and the service has developed over 20 years creating bespoke programmes for our students wishing to experience studying abroad. You can’t compare our programmes to other institutions because they are so different. The programmes have been built up from the reviews of the students who really are our best marketing tool and advert and I’m proud that the team really have listened and created programmes that really go out a limb to make sure students return home with a life-changing experience.

What do you believe to be the biggest factor in being a successful company?

Passion and caring about what you're doing. It’s so rewarding to support our students on their journey of studying abroad which is often their first time away from home, and although companies do have to have financial stability it’s not about profit and numbers, it’s about creating a service that stands out from the rest.