What position do you hold at Abbey Road? What inspired you to join the team?
Christopher: I am the director of our Cadiz homestay program. I have also worked as teacher on the Cadiz program, as well as Director of our Western Civilization Program.
I was inspired to join Abbey Road many years ago by the opportunity to travel to Spain and introduce young students to the Spanish culture.
Did you travel abroad as a high school student? If so, where and how did it impact you?
Christopher: I didn’t have the opportunity to study abroad in high school, though I certainly wish that I had. I first left the country when I was seventeen, and from then on studied and traveled abroad quite regularly.
My first study abroad program was in Mexico, after my first year of college, and it was a life-changing journey for me.
What makes Abbey Road's programs unique?
Christopher: Abbey Road’s programs are unique in that we have a wonderful balance of the comfort that comes from a group dynamic and experienced local and American staff, as well as the exciting and inspiring opportunity to directly experience Spanish culture through our homestays, cultural activities and courses.
What is your favorite part of your job?
Christopher: My favorite part about my job is that I have the opportunity to be present at what I feel is an incredibly important and transitional moment for our students.
Studying abroad is exciting and fun, but it also provides a beautiful space for personal growth, intercultural communication, and awareness of others. Getting to be there, and facilitating this sort of change, is a truly beautiful gift.
What advice would you have for a high school student considering their first trip abroad?
Christopher: I would suggest that any high school student considering a study abroad program find a program that offers them a chance to leave their comfort zone. Studying abroad can be hard at times, but the payoff is immense.
Finding a program that keeps you safe, provides you with proper information, and assists you in your journey is important, but it is also important to be sure that you aren’t overly coddled or sheltered from the realities of the country you visit.