Why You Shouldn't Let Romantic Relationships Interfere With Your Study Abroad Trip(s) With Alison Healy

Alison Healy Dominican University

“It’s so important to get out of what you know. It’s so important to try something new and have that fish-out-of-water experience while you’re young.” - Alison Healy

Alison Healy is our first guest on the podcast that didn't study abroad. And like any good teacher, she morphs her story into a learning experience for pretty any other student going through the same thing she did.

It wasn't her fault...really! She got shot; with cupid's arrow. It ended up working out for the best, but I'll let Alison tell you the rest, herself.

We also learn about Dominican University (@dominicanu), how they're a hispanic serving institution, and rival pretty much any school in the country as far as making study abroad accessible to their students.


  • Starting a career in helping people study abroad 💼 [1:21]
  • What it means to be an Hispanic Serving Institution like Dominican University 🎓 [2:37]
  • Not studying abroad due to falling in love 💘 [3:58]
  • Alison’s career path through teaching and supporting students with disabilities 📖 [7:13]
  • Keeping college affordable and welcoming at Dominican with no tuition and institutional aid 💸 [9:06]
  • Leading a study abroad excursion in Italy ✈ [13:24]
  • Exploring Baroque art and architecture and visiting the Vatican 🎨 [14:34]
  • Memorable meals of oxtail and Jewish artichokes 🍴 [18:10]
  • Horse bites in the crowded roads of Rome 🐎 [19:40]
  • Experiencing the Italian hospital system 🏥 [21:05]
  • Different study abroad opportunities at Dominican University 🚁 [24:12]
  • Recommendations and advice 🙌[26:18]

Valentines Day Traditions Around The World [Infographic] 

What about meeting someone while you're abroad? Makes for a better story, no?

How To Study Abroad in Italy

How Amy Schoenberg Started at Community College And Ended Up Living in Italy For 13 Years

Amy Schoenburg in Italy

"We might be in a certain environment where we're surviving, but if we just stay in that one environment we never know how big we can grow." — Amy Schoenberg 

Amy currently holds the title of longest guest living abroad having spent 13 years in Italy, and she started at a community college. If you've ever thought about actually moving to a different country this interview is perfect for you.

Now back in the Chicagoland, Amy is the Study Abroad Coordinator at Governors State University.

To be be honest, I had never heard of Governors State before I reached to interview Amy, but having gone to a smaller school my self,  I know that there is always some interesting little fact that comes along with the school, or an area that they particularly excel at. Here is what makes Governors State unique:

  • 51% of Governors State's students are minorities
  • The average student is 32.4 years old
  • 69.9% of Governors State students are women

It must be a great place because Amy "loves her job."

In every interview I ask the question: "what advice would you give to someone who is on the bubble about studying abroad?" and Amy gave an answer in the form of a metaphor which is one of the best I've heard, yet. 

Though we travel the world over to find the beautiful, we must carry it with us, or we find it not — Ralph Waldo Emerson


  • Off to Italy from a community college [1:40]
  • What inspired Amy to study abroad and why she chose Italy [6:15]
  • What it was like living in Rome [8:07]
  • Why Amy decided to come back to the United States  [12:27]
  • Witnessing a bus full of pick pockets [14:00]
  • Trip to Uruguay [15:21]
  • Prosciutto sausage, pastas, and Roman broccoli  [17:18]
  • Do you want to grow? [19:03]
  • The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho [22:13]

Statistics on Pickpockets [Infographic]

Studying Abroad in Europe with Tiera Salitros

Tiera Salitros is studying abroad in Rome

"When you're in groups of people traveling you're constantly worrying about those people" — Tiera Salitros 

Tiera Salitros is a design major who is studying abroad in Rome right now through a special program at Iowa State. It's special because she is technically still going to school at Iowa State this semester even though she is living in Italy.

I recommend listening to this interview if you think studying abroad can be a springboard to do even more travel for a semester. Tiera does a great job of explaining different ways to save during the week in order to explore on the weekends.

We also talk about how studying abroad can serve as a trial run for living in a big city and the benefits of going on a solo trip.

Other than that, all the usuals are in this interview...living arrangements, classes and class structure, and as always an epic travel story.


GPS Without The Tickets


  • Finding her way into study abroad [1:50]
  • All Iowa State: Tiera talks about her unique study abroad experience [2:50]
  • Her attitude prior to leaving for Rome [5:58]
  • How living in Rome has changed Tiera's view of the world [7:19]
  • Living arrangements and living in Rome (or any big city) [8:12]
  • Exploring the rest of Europe [11:28]
  • Tiera's advice for someone who is thinking about studying abroad [12:26]
  • Tiera's study abroad tip to allow you to travel more [13:11]
  • Tiera's exciting solo trip [15:01]
  • The benefits of being alone while traveling [18:45]
  • Becoming a resilient traveler [20:08]
  • Flixbus and Train Italia [22:15]
  • Let My People Go Surfing [23:10]

If you want to learn more about Tiera just click on her linked name at the beginning of the article to checkout her blog.

8 Biggest Benefits of Studying Abroad [Infographic]