What is your favorite travel memory?
The field study week I spent on Crete with CYA is a trip I won’t forget. I visited different archaeological and historical sites in the mornings, swam in the afternoons, and enjoyed long taverna meals and rambles with friends in the evening. In between, our bus took us through some of the most stunning seaside and mountain landscapes I’ve ever seen. It was a world away from what my home college’s classroom would’ve been like that fall!
How have you changed/grown since working for your current company?
My experience with CYA has taught me a lot about the international education field--specifically what the major trends are and the variety of programs available abroad for current students. Learning about these things has made me better able to share about opportunities with CYA--like virtual/in-person volunteering and internships--that fit with what students are looking for.
What is the best story you've heard from a return student?
CYA had a student in Fall 2020 whose time in Greece was so meaningful that he decided to stay for nearly a year--next enrolling for the Spring 2021 semester, and then a summer course! This isn’t the first story I’ve heard about students extending their time with CYA, and I think it shows how compelling the ways of life and opportunities to learn in Greece can be.
If you could go on any program that your company offers, which one would you choose and why?
I would love to take a summer course with CYA. I studied in Athens in the fall and mostly traveled on the mainland, so these courses--which often take place across multiple islands--would offer an experience with a whole new season and side of Greece. It would also be fun to branch out from my classics background and try a new course area, like food anthropology or travel writing.
What makes your company unique? When were you especially proud of your team?
I think CYA stands out from other study abroad programs because of its focus on immersion in life in Greece. Students can and do visit other countries across Europe while abroad with CYA because of the close travel distance. However, CYA encourages students to explore all regions of Greece through optional trips, and connects them to neighborhood life in Athens and cultural traditions. I’m proud of the recent work CYA has been doing in expanding social media and researching inclusion practices so that more students are aware of, and have access to, those opportunities.
What do you believe to be the biggest factor in being a successful company?
Coming from my position and after working remotely for several months, I think communication is key. Last-minute ideas and problems always come up--most recently, during the coronavirus pandemic--that require people to communicate effectively. In addition to my team doing regular check-ins, I think CYA does a great job of following up with students and alumni who interact with us on social platforms.