Victoria Vaillancourt

Briefly describe your applied learning experience

My faculty- led experience at the University of Wollongong in NSW, Australia was something that I will never forget. I was fortunate to have the familiarity of a UNCW faculty member while I explored a new country. I would recommend this program to everyone, whether they are a business major or not. I learned so much about myself and the world around me. It was a trip of a lifetime. 

How did you get involved in this applied learning experience and what did you hope to gain from it?

I got involved with this learning experience by speaking with Dr. Robert Keating, a veteran professor in the Cameron School of Business. He informed me about the trip, and the abundance of knowledge to be learned during the study abroad experience. I hoped to gain a new perspective on the world, which is something that I definitely gained along the way. 

What did you gain from this experience? What was challenging? What did you learn?

I gained a new sense of self worth from this trip. Not only was it confidence building to travel across the world with people who were for the most part strangers, it was also eye- opening to see how people in Austalia live. I made lifelong friends who I would never have met otherwise. It also confirmed that International Business study is the right major for me. It was challenging to be away from home for an extended period of time, yet UNCW prepared me for this feat with their pre- departure meetings and ample resources for counseling services. 

In what way will this experience make you a more viable candidate when you are seeking a job or applying for graduate study?

I think that study abroad experience definitely makes a person a more qualified candidate for a job or graduate program. Study abroad experience helps one find themselves, and discover new aspects about the world and the people in it. An interview flows much more smoothly when one is able to elaborate on all of the wonderful life skills that they acquired while traveling the world. I think that such experience makes one stand out.