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Central Alumni Newsletter

Tuesday, Feb. 9, 2010

Hello friends of Central College Abroad! This newsletter, released the second Tuesday of every month, is intended to keep you in touch with what’s happening with Central College Abroad’s programs across the globe.

Leiden, Netherlands students check out art from all different angles in the art and architecture course.
Leiden, the Netherlands students check out art from all different angles
in the art and architecture course.

Central College Abroad to present at the Forum on Education Abroad

Central College Abroad has once again been selected to present at the Forum on Education Abroad Conference, an annual two-day conference, solely focused on the field of education abroad, in Charlotte, N.C.

On Wednesday, March 24, Larry Braskamp, co-author of Global Perspective Inventory (GPI) and professor emeritus at Loyola University Chicago, Dennis Doyle, professor of communication studies at Central College, and Brian Zylstra, manager of on-campus operations for Central College Abroad, will lead a workshop titled “Using the Global Perspective Inventory (GPI) to Assess the Value of Education Abroad."

Braskamp and Doyle will also take part in a panel presentation on Thursday, March 25 titled “Integrating Education Abroad in the Campus Ethos” where they, along with four other session leaders, will present on major initiatives that integrate education abroad into the campus mission and culture.

That same day, Paris program resident director, Shelley Cavaness, alongside other France-based panelists, will participate in a panel presentation discussing, “When Vision and Values Collide: Multiple Perspectives on the Impact of Communication and Technology Onsite (France)."

Learn more about the Global Perspective Inventory (GPI) at

For more information on the conference visit

Now accepting applications for fall 2010!

Start your application now for study abroad during the fall 2010 semester. With Central College Abroad, you can expect a more valuable experience. Personalized program options across the globe allow you to get the most out of your experience abroad. Explore your possibilities and get started on your application now. Applications are due Monday, March 15.

On stage in London, England

Central College Abroad encourages students to get involved and become part of the community in whatever area interests them, from athletics to music, volunteer work, and in the case of two students in London spring 2009, theatre! “Get involved!” is one piece of advice that Central seniors Jenna Vik and Andy McGuire took to heart during their semester in London, England. Looking to take advantage of living in one of the most popular theatre capitals in the world, Vik and McGuire decided the best way to get involved in London was to be a part of the show.

After some searching they chose to audition for the musical-- “You’re a Good Man Charlie Brown.” The Network Theatre chose Jenna Vik to play the role as Sally Brown and Andy McGuire as Snoopy. It turned out to be the perfect fit. The musical allowed Vik and McGuire to work one- on- one with Londoners from all different backgrounds.

Vik and McGuire were dedicated to this experience attending rehearsals and even designing their own costumes! When it was time for the show to begin the audience was filled with numerous Central Abroad students who came to support their fellow classmates. London’s program director, Mark Simmons, made sure that Vik and McGuire were supported by announcing the dates of their performances in class every week.

Andrew McGuire(snoopy), Jenna Vik (Sally) and fellow performer enjoyed their opportunity to participate in this musical.
Andrew McGuire(snoopy), Jenna Vik (Sally) and fellow performer in “You’re a Good Man Charlie Brown.

“I would highly recommend this theatre to any study abroad students interested in performing in London,” said Vik "– It was a very friendly, welcoming environment that gave both Andy and me an idea of what it’s like to perform in a British theatre with British actors. Looking back on my time abroad, performing in 'You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown’ was, without a doubt, the highlight of my year."

“Study Abroad has given me a glimpse at the huge world out there,” said McGuire commenting on his overall experience abroad. “I feel I learned a lot about life. People seem to hunger for knowledge about life and now I can provide some sort of help in that area; however, I am sure that in the end the only answers about life can be gained by actually living it.”

To learn more about the London program visit:

Experiential learning in Paris--Art and the Louvre

Who: Tian Tian
Major: Art and economics, Wabash College, Indiana
Semester abroad: Paris, fall 2009
Experiential learning: Louvre Museum

Memorable experience: The Louvre Museum is one of Paris’ most popular tourist attractions holding some of the most creative and historical pieces of art in Europe including the famous Mona Lisa. As part of one of his art courses at the Catholic Institute in Paris, Tian Tian was advised by his professor to take advantage of the opportunity to get involved as an informal guide at the Louvre.

I went through a rigorous process of preparation and training until I started in December 2009. My main responsibility at the Louvre was to give presentations about the paintings of Nicolas Poussin’s at one of the galleries on the second floor of Louvre. Since the fact that the majority of the visitors are French speakers, this was a challenge for my language skills and a great way to show how much I have improved in capturing the French language. At the end of this experience at the Louvre, I am satisfied with my performance. Moreover, I found tremendous growth in both my art study and my work experience.


Tian Tian leads tours about the paintings of Nicolas Poussin in French, English and Chinese.
Tian Tian leads tours about the paintings of Nicolas Poussin in French, English and Chinese.

One major element that makes my experience unique is the fact that this semester in Paris is my ’second-level’ study abroad. Originally living and studying in my home city, Shenyang, in northeastern China for 20 years, I started my college career in the United States in 2007 at Wabash College, Indiana. These two years of education at Wabash have tremendously changed my perspective of the world. Therefore, the abroad semester in Paris adds one more stream of influence in my understanding of the world, which forms a trinity.

There is no place like Paris that could flourish my personal life and interests. The top-notch museums and cultural phenomenon in Paris enriched my spare time and enhanced my previous study at an unprecedented level. This experience opened my eyes for potential future careers in France.

For more information on the Paris program visit:

Central College Abroad announces Cooperative Council
Conference schedule

Central College Abroad invites cooperating institutions attend the Cooperative Council Conference April 8-10, 2010, at Central College in Pella, Iowa. The schedule for their two day event, “Navigating the Study Abroad Experience with Assessment-Based Programming” is as follows:

Thursday April 8:

  • Newcomer’s voyage
  • Lunch
  • Presidential welcome
  • Assessment: Influencing pre-departure/re-entry programming
  • Exploring Central’s campus
  • Virtual pre-departure course simulation
  • Study abroad fair
  • Presidential reception

Friday April 9:

  • Breakfast
  • Navigating Central’s programs
  • Student panel
  • Assessment: Influencing academic decision-making
  • Discover historic Pella
  • Lunch
  • When visions and values collide: Technology and communication on site
  • Guiding Central College Abroad
  • Taste of Holland reception

Saturday April 10:

  • Pre-departure orientation

To register visit:

For more information visit:

Register Now!

Vance scholarship helps students achieve dreams

Laura Nicklaus, a student from Bradley University, is our recipient of the $1,000 Vance Scholarship for the Vienna, Austria program this spring 2010.

Laura NicklausWho: Laura Nicklaus
Major: Civil engineering/environmental concentration, Bradley University
Semester Abroad: Vienna, Austria, spring 2010

Why she chose Central College Abroad: I chose Central College Abroad because its staff members were most willing and able to help me prepare for my semester abroad. Central College Abroad has a relationship with Bradley University so that my Bradley scholarships are applied towards my dues to Central College Abroad. Central College Abroad offered me personalized attention to help me prepare for my semester abroad. They also have an on-site director in Vienna for any problems or questions that may arise once I’m there.

How the Vance Scholarship is making it easier/financially possible
for her to study abroad:
Obviously, college tuition bills are not cheap, especially when studying abroad. Receiving the Vance scholarship assures me that I can enjoy my time abroad without worrying about the extra money that study abroad tuition costs above and beyond Bradley tuition.

What she is most looking forward to abroad: I look forward to immersing myself in the German and Austrian culture. I have studied German since seventh grade, and it has always been my dream to complete some of my school work in a German-speaking country. I look forward to meeting other German-speaking students like myself from across the globe. I wish to learn about the German and Austrian culture and teach others about my culture.

What she hopes to achieve during her semester abroad: I hope to improve my German skills and also gain a broader world view. An education should not only give students intensive knowledge of a major subject and prepare them for a career; it should also make them knowledgeable about the world around them. People in other countries have many different beliefs and cultural practices, and understanding other ways of life will give me a greater appreciation for my life here in the United States.

Learn more about the Central College Vance Scholarship at:

Get to know the director

Central College welcomes Samuel Mate-Kodjo as the expert leader for Central College Abroad’s new summer program, Performing Arts and Culture in Accra, Ghana, Africa. Mate-Kodjo is an associate professor of Spanish at Central College and has a unique tie to Ghana. Born in Accra, the nation’s capital, Mate-Kodjo was raised in this intriguing African culture and is eager to share his experience with students.

Samuel Mate-Kodjo’s expertise helps make the new Ghana program possible.
Samuel Mate-Kodjo’s expertise helps make the new Ghana program possible.

An alumnus of the University of Ghana, Legon, where the Central College Abroad program will be housed, Mate-Kodjo is an expert of the area and what is has to offer students. He will use his knowledge to help students adapt to the new culture, experience exceptional excursions and offer a truly personalized time abroad.

The Ghana program offers the same safe and friendly experience as all the Central College Abroad programs, and it truly is unique.

“It is Central’s only program in Africa, and it is an English language program,” says Mate-Kodjo. “Excursions are an integral part of the cultural immersion. Each moment is a living, learning experience! The country has a beautiful tropical climate and is home to a warm, knowledgeable, helpful people who are genuinely interested in learning about other people.”

With his 15 years of experience in the Central College classroom, Mate-Kodjo looks forward moving his lessons outside the classroom walls.

“Our students will be exposed to a history and culture that are quite different from what they know,” says Mate-Kodjo.

The Central College Abroad Ghana program will launch its first adventure this summer 2010. It’s not too late to get involved. The deadline for applications is Monday, March 1, so please don’t wait!

For more information on this new summer program in Ghana visit:

Central College Abroad Quick Links for Faculty & Advisors:

Contact Us

Central College Abroad
812 University Box 0140
Pella, IA 50219
Fax: 641-628-5375

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