Tiana Ellis ’24

Program: Chile Semester

Major: Sports Management and Hispanic Studies

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

Growing up I always knew that I wanted to study abroad. I made the decision to study abroad to grow academically but also as a person. I decided on the Chile program because of the homestay aspect because it is an automatic immersion into the Spanish language, which was the biggest aspect that I wanted for studying abroad.

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

One of the cultural experiences that I had while in Chile multiple times was having an “asado” which is a Chilean barbeque with my host parents and all of their friends. This is a major aspect of my experience that continues to have a lasting impression because not only did my Spanish improve from listening and contributing to many conversations but also because those people have become a part of me.

Describe your overall study abroad experience.

My overall study abroad experience was out of this world. I cannot thank Chile enough for all the great it showed me. The people, the food, the landscapes, and so much more. I struggle to describe my overall experience because there is simply too much to talk about because everything was an experience I had never experienced before.

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?

Some of the benefits that I experienced were learning about a new culture and its history, improvement of my Spanish skills, creating deep and meaningful memories and friendships, and giving myself a new perspective on the world and overall life.

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

I can offer some of the unique experiences that I had that others in the group didn’t have like taking public transportation everywhere, what it was like being a person of color, budgeting, and planning trips only inside the country.