Danielle Ostertag

Danielle is an Ambassador who studied abroad in Country

Why did you choose to study abroad and how did you decide on this program?

I always knew that I wanted to study abroad since I applied to CSB. My sister went to CSB four years before me and also attended the Greco-Roman program. I heard about all of her amazing experiences abroad and I too knew that I wanted to have similar experiences. I've always dreamed about going to the islands of Greece and seeing the Colosseum in Rome. So deciding on Greco-Roman was obvious for me. Also, any study abroad program was a great way for me to experience a new culture and way of life.

Briefly describe a specific cultural experience you had on your trip that made a lasting impression.

While in Greece, one of our assignments for our culture class was to interview a Greek about his/her life. At first I was a little nervous because of the language barrier, but it ended up not being a problem at all. I interviewed a woman who owned a bakery right down the road from where I lived. She was born and raised in Greece, and her life really fascinated me. To see the differences two cultures have with one another was really eye-opening. I ended up becoming friends with this woman. I am really appreciative for branching out and meeting a native.

Describe your overall study abroad experience.

I could have not asked for a better study abroad experience. I came into the program not knowing anyone and ended up making 29 new best friends. Also, my director and his wife were amazing and became my parents away from home. The people that I shared my experience with were amazing. I also loved learning about two different cultures. Greco- Roman is a special program because you are emerged into two different cultures. I loved this aspect! Additionally, I loved being able to go on field trips to different historical places or churches for class time.

Based on your experiences abroad, what are some of the benefits of spending a semester abroad? How has studying abroad contributed to your personal, academic, and professional development?

Studying abroad has benefited me in several ways. I have become aware and have adapted to two different cultures abroad. It pushed me outside of my comfort zone and really got me to think about the way people do things and the traditions they hold. I have seen a new way of life and have appreciated my life a little more. I have also met incredible people abroad. I have 29 new best friends and 2 new abroad parents. Studying abroad has helped me tremendously academically and professionally because I have experienced global leadership and a new way of communicating. Both of these experiences fit hand in hand with my majors.

What advice can you offer for CSB/SJU students who are considering or planning to study abroad?

My advice for students considering to study abroad is to stop considering and to just do it. Studying abroad will be the best decision you have made and you will not regret it. No matter where you go, you will have the best time of your life. You will become great friends with the people you go with and you will see a culture you have never seen before.

Do you have questions about studying abroad in Greco-Roman? Email Danielle at dmostertag@csbsju.edu