Interview With 2018 IES Film Competition Winner, Philip Baites

Philip Baites and I at the IES film contestWe’re all on a journey and it’s not the places or sights you see that have a lasting impact on us, it’s the people” — Philip Baites

Philip Baites of UT Knoxville was the 2018 IES Abroad Study Abroad Film Festival winner. Not only was Philip the winner of the competition, he was also the first student we’ve had on the podcast to study abroad for an entire academic year.

Philip did a great job here, and for me it felt more like I was listening to a story than I was conducting an interview. His slight southern accent and calming voice make it clear why his music video took home the grand prize.

As with every interview, we touch on different topics surrounding Philip’s trip, but unlike every interview, he did some things not many others do, like receiving multiple scholarships and learning both Arabic and French.

Quote Philip would like to leave you with:

“The more life you live and the more experiences you have the more life you pour into your music” — Philip’s friend 

GPS Without The Tickets


  • Deciding on Morocco…for a year [01:55]
  • Learning Arabic [3:50]
  • The Boren and CLS Scholarships [6:07]
  • Studying Abroad with IES Abroad [9:28]
  • Coming home during winter break [10:40]
  • Juggling his passion [11:40]
  • A day in the life in Morocco (he got to surf) [14:50]
  • “Uncertainty is normal” [19:34]
  • Living arrangements [21:16]
  • The cheapest flight I’ve ever heard of [22:40]
  • Adventures [23:30]
  • Food in Morocco [26:31]
  • WordReference [29:30]
  • The Film Contest [30:52]
  • The production [37:21]

Popular Moroccan Food Video

Tangier to Casablanca – The Winner

Studying Abroad in Dublin? Let Amanda Hackney Show You How

Amanda Hackney in Dublin“I don’t think there’s any experience as eye opening and rewarding.” Amanda Hackney

Amanda Hackney Dublin, Ireland

Amanda Hackney studied abroad in Dublin and in this interview we’re going to find out exactly why.

As you will see in the show notes, Amanda’s trip did not get off to a very good start 😂. She actually missed a connecting flight at the start of her trip and as if that weren’t enough, she lost her luggage, too.

She bounced back in spades, though, and we hear exactly how in the interview.

During her trip (which she took during a spring semester) she got to explore Europe and make lifelong friends in the process. Now I know this sounds like cliché study abroad talk that you see posted on flyers all over your campus the signs, but it is so true, just listen!

Amanda might not know this, but I found her by typing “studying abroad in Dublin” in Google and a post from her time there was the number one hit…an impressive feet. If you’re thinking about Dublin, Ireland, or Europe in general you should definitely tune in and listen to someone who’s done it all before.

“Never take advice from someone you wouldn’t want to trade places with” Darren Hardy 


GPS Without The Tickets


  • Deciding on Dublin and IES Abroad 🇮🇪 [1:43]
  • Going to school in Ireland 🏫 [4:22]
  • Staying in an extended stay hotel (with maids) 🏨 [5:00]
  • Getting psyched for the trip 🤩 [6:39]
  • Missing her connecting flight at the beginning of her trip 🛩 [8:30]
  • Exploring the rest of Europe 🗺 [10:35]
  • Fish n’ chips in Ireland and delicious Italian food  🎣 [12:07]
  • Amanda’s advice for for students thinking about studying abroad 🙌 [12:52]
  • Ireland For Dummies (Interesting fact: the first For Dummies book was created in 1991)  📚 [13:56]

Oh My Goodness Guinness [Infographic]

The Ultimate Fish & Chips Video (Remember, the waters are different across the pond, so the fish are, too)