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ALUMNI NEWS

Four alumni joined the GLi ambassadors program recently. The Ambassadors program was created to allow alumni to share their experiences with students interested in international education. Read more about them below.

Meet GLi Ambassador, Cullen. Cullen is an alumnae of the Critical Studies on Food in Italy Summer 2016 Program which she attended while studying at DePauw University.

Can you share something about your experience studying abroad in Italy with GLi?<img src=

“My name is Cullen and I am a senior at DePauw University. I’m an Environmental Biology major and an Environmental Fellow looking to go into Food Science or Nutrition after college. I love how traveling allows you to meet new people, introduces you to new languages and customs, and challenges your beliefs either to strengthen, or change them. I arrived at Gustolab International with so much excitement and left with new friends, amazing experiences, and so much more knowledge. As someone who has been interested in food systems, nutrition, and health for a number of years, a program that focused on critically studying food systems, how intercultural interactions affect food and health choices, and how people appreciate not only the quality of the food, but of the company at the meal sounded like the program for me. I was exposed to farms where the buffalos milked themselves, markets where the vendors pick the fruit for you based on when you plan on eating it, and many different perspectives from the students who came from all over the US to share this experience. My goal of being an ambassador for Gustolab International is to share with others an experience that truly reshaped the way I view food and how, we as humans, gather to eat together. However, this program taught me more than just what I got from the classroom — living in a city, commuting to school, finding my way and getting lost, and getting out of my comfort zone. I grew in this program in more ways than on, and hope that I can help others learn about it as well.”

Meet GLi Ambassador, Haley. Haley is an alumnae of the Critical Studies on Food in Italy Summer 2016 Program which she attended through the University of Massachusetts Amherst. Haley also has a blog that features posts from her time in Rome: Eatingzestyinandout.wordpress.com

haley-notarantonio-nHere’s a short note from Haley for future applicants.

“I’m Haley, a nutrition major on the dietetics track at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. I love the study of food culture, how it affects the people around us and brings different groups of people together. I want to be involved in the Ambassador’s program because I want to endorse and encourage students around my campus to take a chance on Gustolab Institute. I want students to get out of their comfort zones and explore food culture in a unique and incredible way! My time in Rome this past summer was eye opening, inspiring and enriching. Every day I learned something new about food, sustainability, media and culture. I learned a lot about myself and the different ways that I take on challenges in the classroom and out in the streets of a busy city. I would recommend this study abroad trip to anyone, no matter what your major is you will find something extremely fascinating about this experience that I would do all over again if I could.”

Meet GLi Ambassador, Paige. Paige is an alumnae of the Critical Studies on Food in Italy Summer 2016 Program which she attended through the University of Massachusetts Amherst.

Paige Dougherty nCan you share something about your experience studying abroad in Italy with GLi?

“I’m a sophomore at UMass Amherst, Italian Studies Major with the hope of a dual major in Hospitality & Tourism Management. I love to travel and have wanted to be at least bilingual since I was in elementary school. I attended the GustoLab program because I’ve always been fascinated by history, food, travelling, and language. I went to a classics high school in Boston so I had a really strong knowledge of the Roman Empire, among other things related to Italy. It was convenient for me to do a 5 week program because I was afraid to go straight into a semester abroad or full year abroad. Now, knowing that I can speak to locals comfortably, get directions from them, and feel like a local, I have a new sense of independence. GustoLab helped me narrow down what I want to do with my future by providing me with unique experiences. I plan on studying abroad my Junior year, potentially in Taormina. My advice for future students would be to take risks. Use the opportunities presented to you to take life head on. If you’re too afraid to try new things, are you really living?”

Meet GLi Ambassador, Tiffany. Tiffany is an alumnae of the Critical Studies on Food in Italy Summer 2014 Program which she attended during her Junior Year at Mills College (English Major). Her interest  in food studies began officially when she took a food history course. She has since graduated and is now working as a Mentor and Community Service Coordinator at Chemeketa Community College. She loves traveling and exploring cultures through food.

tiffany-watson-nCan you share something about your experience studying abroad in Italy with GLi?

“I had a wonderful experience with GLi; the program gave me the opportunity to both participate in Roman life, as well as share a few months of my life with Rome. Living in Ostiense, allowed me to be a temporary character in the neighborhood; there is a bakery in Rome that won’t come up on your Google Maps, which once knew my face. I will also say, that the city itself never gets tiring, even when you have circled the Pantheon at least three times, in the summer heat, while getting lost on the supposedly simple path to Italian lessons. I have had the fortune to return to Italy, unfortunately not Rome, twice since my first stay, due to a project I began while studying at GLi. I found my writing skills, and perhaps even more my listening skills to be useful to the international community of students; I continue to work with on issues of food production, nutrition, and sustainability. As for the classes, they were wonderfully informative. I am not the type of person to vacation well, so the courses really kept my energies up, sparked continuous engagement with the culture I was living in (which can be difficult if you live in an English speaking bubble), and enriched my understanding of the people I interacted with from the day to day.”

We’re seeking alumni stories who are as enthusiastic about GLi as we are. If you are enjoying success in your career and would like to share your career development, we invite you to contact us at info@gustolab.com.

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