Dana Godrich, Class of 2019
Program/Course of Study:
How did your experience abroad add to your academic journey at Rutgers?
This year, I spent my New Jersey summer in Australia's winter for a change. I went on the IES Summer Sydney Australia Internship Program, and not to be cliche or risk being overly corny by starting off with this statement, but it was completely life altering. It was the end of my junior year and I was (brace yourself for me being overdramatic) heartbroken that it was seemingly impossible to study abroad as a science major considering the difficulties with credit transfers, lack of rigor and classes, and time off of a credit-intensive major. I am a Genetics major and managed, with the help of the Center for Global Education, to find the perfect fit for me: interning at the oldest national history museum in Australia: The Australian Museum. I spent the summer conducting research in terrestrial snail evolution and island biodiversity on Lord Howe Island off the coast of Sydney. I really had no idea that such a program existed and I was able to fully individualize my study abroad experience to match my scientific interests. I told myself that if I were spending my summer in Australia that I'd do something that was only possible to do there and studying unique species. Australia's oldest natural history museum seemed to be the perfect fit for me. With this type of internship matching and customization, it was the best decision I made in my college career and it really brought me outside my realm of familiarization and challenged me scientifically and culturally.