I work in the Student Affairs department which means I’m responsible for helping students through all the in’s and out’s of finding a job abroad, as well as a lot of behind the scenes stuff that to keep everything humming along! I am also part of the ITA Charity Committee. Last but not least, I'm a two-time ITA Thanksgiving Throwdown Champion!
I grew up in middle of nowhere Nebraska and moved to Iowa to study English at Drake University. I always wanted to travel outside of the US, and my opportunity came when I applied to teach English in China after I graduated from college. In the summer of 2007, I packed up my belongings and bought a one-way ticket to Kunming, China. I had never heard of it, I knew nothing about it, and I cried the whole way through the security line. I had no idea what to expect, I didn’t know if I could make it through a month there, much less the full year I was supposed to teach, or really what I had somehow gotten myself into. Three years later, after teaching countless classes to pretty much every age group, and traveling throughout China and Southeast Asia, I would finally make my way back to the States.
Now that I am the States, I like to spend my time traveling (obviously), cooking, gardening, playing bocce ball, biking, exploring Chicago, and planning my next international adventure.
I'm from Nebraska and went to school at Drake University in Iowa.
The Netherlands, Germany, China, Hong Kong, Vietnam, Cambodia, Thailand, Laos, Nicaragua, Mexico, Panama, and Colombia.
I taught English in China for three years.
Travel is especially important to me, not just because of the new experiences, sights, sounds, etc., but also because it is a constant challenge. Whether I’m trying to communicate in a language I’ve never spoken or trying to figure out how to get from point A to point B on my next adventure, I find myself in situations that continue to challenge me.
Don’t forget your sunscreen and bug spray…ever! Nothing ruins a trip faster than a sunburn and bug bites.
Book: 1Q84 – Haruki Murakami – at 1000 + pages, it is long enough to get you through a lot of time spent in transit.
Food: All of it! Seriously there are very few foods I’ve met that I don’t like…
I will eat anything.
My favorite part of working at ITA, besides the great people, spontaneous fun events, and free food, is knowing that when I am talking to our students, I’m talking to people who are just like I was all those years ago. Each of the students that I get to talk to is getting ready to take a huge leap, and embark on their own exhilarating/harrowing experience abroad, and it’s great to get to be a part of that.