I love my job...

In January I was hired as a coordinator for the Office of International Programs at The University of Southern Mississippi.

What does that mean?

Well, if I were to pull from those descriptive words they recommend you use to vamp up a resume, I: coordinate, manage, publicize, market, recruit, promote, facilitate, counsel, advise, aaaaaand that's all I can come up with off the top of my head. I do all of these things, as a coordinator for study abroad.


So, permanently I reside in Hattiesburg, MS. But for a little over four months this year, I will be abroad managing a study abroad program our office coordinates. From 5 July - 5 August, I will reside at King's College in London (England), helping manage our British Studies Program. Started in 1976 the BSP is actually the largest program of its kind operated by a U.S. university. That's awesome.


Then, in the beginning of February I'll head to the heart of the Loire Valley of France, to reside in a 1,000 year old Benedictine Abbey which rests in the small town of Pontlevoy. As a semester program, I will live here, and manage the program, for three months. Not by myself, of course - no, with the program Director, student coordinator and faculty to help - The Abbey Program changes the lives of students who participate. I know this because it changed my life significantly as a student in 2004. I'm sure one day I'll write about that experience.

Wow. I know.

It's just as exciting in Hattiesburg, really. Serving as a resource to students looking for a program to suit their major/year in school/goals is so rewarding. And the very best part, is hearing their voice on the other end of the phone, just calling to share how amazing their adventures have been. Or seeing their faces when they come back to our office for the first time since departure, anxious to share their stories and photos.

Sometimes, when I think about what classmates from middle and high school are doing, I think "boy is my life boring...I'm not amounting to much". BUT THAT'S CRAZY! I have a passion for study abroad, education abroad, and travel in general....and that's what I coordinate FOR A LIVING!

Sure, sometimes I freak out thinking about "the next step" - but I've NEVER known what my next step would be. Doors just open and I step through them, and I'm kind of hoping that will continue to happen. I'm starting Grad School in the fall for Speech Communication - well, if I can get my application packet in, that is. That will keep me here a while. Then, who knows? I think about buying a house every day, hopefully Dad can help with that decision soon (they get home Monday!).

We'll just have to see. But for now, I love my job and where I am in life. It's pretty awesome.

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