Student Stories

In this series, students explore their global experiences in relation to their identities by asking, “Who am I abroad?”

If you would like to be connected with a study abroad alum who has participated in your program or country of interest and shares your identity, please submit the Connect with Alumni Request Form, and we’ll follow up with you by email.

If you are a study abroad alumni and are interested in sharing a Student Story, please fill out an interest form.


Nallely Gutiérrez

Nallely, an Intensive Psychology major. and Language Studies minor talks about studying in Barcelona, Spain through the Psychology and Cognitive Science Global Internship program as a first-generation college student from a low-income background.

Denilson Perez

Denilson, a Latin America and Latinx Studies/Sociology combined major and Language Studies minor talks about studying in Bologna, Italy, and Mexico City, Mexico through the University of California Education Abroad Program (UCEAP) as a first-generation college student from a low-income background.

Michael Hernandez

Michael, a second-year transfer student with a passion for Sociology and Philosophy talks about studying and interning abroad in Buenos Aires, Argentina, through the Latin American and Latino Studies (LALS) Global Internship Program as a a first-generation student of color.

Daniel Westbrook

Daniel, an anthropology with a minor in philosophy major, talks about studying abroad in Spain and Morocco during the summer of 2022 as a first-gen, non-traditional, and EOP student.

Emilie Lenoir

Emilie, an environmental sciences major, talks about studying abroad in France during the summer and fall of 2022 as a Renaissance scholar and EOP student.

Sammy Moore

Sammy, a double politics and philosophy major, talks about traveling to Scotland with UCEAP and to Washington, DC as a bisexual woman.

Anya Hynell

Anya, a psychology major, talks about studying abroad in Madrid, Spain as a queer, low-income student who took part in UCEAP’s Complutense University of Madrid program.

Lucius Mitchell

Lucius, a global economics major and recipient of the Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship, talks about studying abroad in Berlin, Germany through UCEAP’s Berlin Summer program.

Janan Ali

Janan, a nontraditional, 2022 UC Santa Cruz, Film and Digital Media graduate, studied Film History and Restoration in Bologna, Italy during the summer of 2022.

Eliza Beam

Eliza, a second-year Critical Race and Ethnic Studies (CRES) major with a minor in Education, studied abroad in Ireland as a Black and Queer person.

Alcides Fuentes

Alcides, a recently graduated transfer student, originally from El Salvador, double majoring in Global Environmental Justice and Latin American Latino Studies studied abroad on the Agroecology Practicum global seminar in Guatemala.

Esteban Rosales

Esteban, a Human Biology major, studied abroad in Florence, Italy as a first-generation, LatinX, low-income, EOP student.

Colby Grey

Colby, a Philosophy major, studied abroad on an Independent Program through CIEE in Copenhagen, Denmark and on Semester at Sea.

Maya Amin

Maya, a politics and legal studies double major, discusses studying abroad in Ireland as a POC and first-generation university student.

Lauren Feder

Lauren, a recently graduated psychology major who spent a summer quarter in Sorrento, Italy on a UCSC Global Seminar discusses studying abroad as a first-generation college student.

Jaydah Branch

Jaydah, a Linguistics major, discusses studying abroad in Seoul, South Korea as a low-income, African-American student.

Fiona Lee

Fiona, a double major in Politics and Applied Linguistics and Multilingualism, discusses studying abroad in France as a 1.5 generation Korean-American immigrant.

Shannon King

Shannon, an Applied Linguistics and Multilingualism major with a minor in Linguistics and a teaching certificate in TESOL, discusses studying abroad in Bordeaux, France as a Queer Swedish-American student.

Griselda Carolina Torres

Griselda, a psychology major, discusses studying in South Korea as a Latinx first-generation student from a low-income household.

Celia Debonnet

Celia, a Business Management Economics major, discusses studying in France as an American with Korean features raised in a French family.

Chailen August

Chailen, a CRES major with a Black Studies minor, discusses studying abroad in Ghana as an ABC (African-American/Black/Caribbean) student from a low-income background.

Edwina Malmberg

Edwina, a Sociology major, discusses participating in the AFS Intercultural Exchange Program in Indonesia as a Panamanian female from a low-income background.

Sereena Yeghiazarian

Sereena, a Film and Digital Media Studies major, discusses participating in a Virtual Global Internship as a transfer student from an immigrant household.

Samantha Keefer

Samantha, a fourth-year Psychology and Education double major, discusses participation in the UCEAP Made in Italy program in Florence, Italy as an EOP student.

Meghan Lamba

Meghan, a Biomolecular Engineering major, discusses participating in a UCSC Exchange Program at the Technical University of Denmark as a South Asian female.

Anahi Mendoza

Anahi, a psychology major with an education minor, discusses studying abroad in London as a Latinx, first-generation student.

Christina Yu

Christina, a Cognitive Science major, discusses her experiences as an Asian-American while studying abroad in Rome, Italy.

Elisabet Garcia

Elisabet Garcia, an Anthropology major, discusses studying abroad as a first-generation college student from a low-income background and as a queer Latina.

Chelsey Boykin

Chelsey Boykin, a Psychology major, shares her experience understanding culture in new ways while studying abroad as a first-generation, ABC (African-American/Black/Caribbean) student in Barbados.

Alexander Palines

Alexander, a double major in sociology and politics, discusses studying abroad in Paris and London as a first-generation Filipino-American.

Lucia Ortiz

Lucia, a Sociology and Latin American and Latino Studies double major, shares her experience pushing aside doubt and fear in order to realize her dreams of studying abroad as a first-generation, low-income, LatinX student.

Ashley Bayman

Ashley, a study abroad advisor, discusses studying abroad as a low-income, first-generation, transfer student of color in Mexico, Brazil, and Argentina.

Sakoya Hart

Sakoya, a Film & Digital Media Studies and Ecology & Evolutionary Biology double major, discusses studying abroad as an EOP student in Costa Rica.

Marie DeShelter

Marie, a Sociology and Feminist Studies Major, discusses studying abroad in Denmark at the University of Copenhagen.

Ayodele Abdul-Hadi

Ayodele, an Environmental Studies major with a concentration in global environmental justice, discusses her experiences as an African-American Muslim woman studying abroad in Córdoba Spain.

Camille Cheng

Camille, a Feminist Studies and Legal Studies double major, discusses her experiences as a Chinese-American student studying abroad for three consecutive summers in Paris, Hong Kong, and London.

Portrait of a person

Tolulope Familoni

Tolulope Familoni, a Robotics Engineering major, discusses studying abroad as an ABC STEM student in Paris, France.

Portrait of a person

Megan Spitzer

Megan Spitzer, a fourth-year majoring in Politics, discusses her experience studying abroad as a female, mixed-race, queer American at the University of Queensland (UQ) in Brisbane, Australia.

Portrait of a person

Katy Levine

Katy, an Intensive Psychology Major, discusses studying abroad in a multi-city experience called “London and Paris, Global Cities Urban Realities.”