03 Aug Catch Her If You Can

[caption id="attachment_2201" align="aligncenter" width="300"] Do you choose to face the world?[/caption]  "I choose to face the world" is the motto of this confident, adventurous, inspiring young traveler, Kim Charters. Hailing from Bay City, Michigan, this 19 year old is taking on the world one country at a time--and usually by herself! Her most recent trip abroad included Norway, Germany and beyond. From sleeping on strangers' couches (don't worry, it's safe, you'll here more about it later!), to hiking 10 hours through Norwegian snow with a man and a dog she had just met the day before, to drinking countless liters of German beer and stomping on tables until she couldn't anymore in one of her favorite cities--Kim is a phenomenal, confident example of how to get the most out of your adventures! I've known Kim for a handful of years and she didn't mind answering a few questions for me. So, here is a piece of Kim's story, from her most recent adventures abroad. It is my hope that people like Kim can inspire other young travelers to JUST GO. So, tell me all you can about couch surfing! I am so interested in how it works, how safe you felt, what your hosts were like, what you did, etc. I want to let people know that it’s not unsafe or crazy or any of those other negative things that people assume. "Couchsurfing? Do you mean life-changing experience? So, you start off by going to couchsurfing.com, make...

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17 Aug Real work experience, a voice with VOS

[caption id="attachment_2213" align="alignnone" width="660"] Take the leap![/caption] As grad school began, I felt my time was up. I was too busy with classes and papers to participate in a study abroad program. However, after deciding that I wanted to write a thesis on study abroad programs and intern in the study abroad office at my campus, I started to crave something that I had missed. So instead of regretting the past I decided to make the jump and apply for an internship abroad which would give me experience in the international education field. I made my decision to live and intern in Buenos Aires, through the flexible program that Panrimo offered so I could brush up on my Spanish. The  2-month internship I chose required my native language, a basic grasp of Spanish, initiative, and creativity – a perfect combination for my interests and goals. On my very first day, I was welcomed into the VOS family with kisses on the cheek and many smiling faces. One thing that I noticed right away was that the school would be great for practicing the language since all of the staff and teachers were speaking to me in Spanish. After a week of observing the culture of the school and talking with some of the students, I was more than happy to start promoting, advertising, and marketing for this friendly Spanish school. Since then I have been steadily building the school’s image through online websites...

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