Italy Study Abroad Program Spotlight: Kelsey Phelon
May 29, 2020
Ever since she watched The Lizzie McGuire Movie as a child, Kelsey dreamed of studying abroad. She was also encouraged by her aunt, who spent a year abroad when she was in college, to take full advantage of opportunities to travel the world as part of her undergraduate experience.
“Pamplin has a great selection of programs that fit with my academic goals which made it seem like the perfect opportunity to expand my horizons.”
Kelsey chose to study at Università Bocconi in Milan, Italy to learn about international business practices.
“Studying in Milan emphasized the globalization of business which will aid my mindset as I enter the professional world. Additionally, it has enhanced my education by exposing me to distinguished professors and peers. My skills and confidence within business are more robust after studying abroad.”
Kelsey also learned how to adapt to quickly changing circumstances as concerns surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic mounted during her time in Italy.
“COVID-19 was a big challenge. Specifically, adapting to the Italian government’s safety precautions and then following Virginia Tech risk management while focusing on school. Being alert and having initiative allowed me to continue my coursework in the US.”
Despite the unexpected turn of events, Kelsey is thankful for the opportunities she had to open her eyes to different viewpoints while abroad.
“One of the fondest memories I have from Bocconi is a class discussion in International Business Management. The diversity in the classroom from background to opinion was refreshing and enlightening. Students from around the world were sharing from their perspective — I learned so much.”
Key Advice From Kelsey on Studying Abroad:
“Hit the ground running. Take it from me, you never know what will happen so make every day count and start accomplishing goals from day one. Say yes to new experiences and make an effort to meet new people right away.”