We got in touch with former SAI ambassador Caleb Crum, a Missouri State University alum who studied abroad with SAI during the spring of 2014 at Florence University of the Arts. Caleb is now the founder of a blog called Goingabroadtips and now works as a travel planner! Needless to say, studying abroad was an important part of his life and guided him choose to work in the travel industry. We asked him about how his experience studying abroad in Florence has affected his travel related career path!
What have you done since studying abroad?
Since studying abroad in Spring 2014, I have graduated from Missouri State University (Go Bears) with a Bachelor’s Degree in Hospitality & Restaurant Administration with emphasis in Tourism Management, Food & Beverage Management, and Club Management. During my last year of school, I became an SAI Ambassador and then, after graduation, became an SAI summer intern. I have since returned to Springfield, MO and now am working as a vacation planner!
How has studying abroad affected you?
The person you were before studying abroad and the person you are after studying abroad are completely different people. After studying abroad, I realized how important it was to take a moment and appreciate the little things in life without being caught up in the fast-paced society that we live in now. Professionally, it made me realize just how much I was right in choosing to work in the travel industry.
Did your study abroad experience play any role in you obtaining your current position at your place of work?
It certainly did! Seeing that I had travel experience and an international education were major talking points in every interview I have had since coming back.
Where were some of the most important lessons you learned abroad?
Take a moment to actually look around you and you might be surprised at what you could’ve missed. Don’t worry about making it to your destination as much as enjoying the journey getting there. Slow down and actually live life.
What was your “SAI Moment”?
I think it was actually my last night in Florence. Me, my roommates, and all of our friends got together one last time and even though we were leaving each other, we knew we would all cherish the connections we had made forever.
Any funny stories or favorite memories from your time studying abroad?
I have so many stories and memories from my time in Florence that it’s hard to pick! I’d have to say that remembering all of the fun times that my roommates and I had while hanging out with our friends at the “Gucci Palace” (the name for our huge apartment that was down the street from a Gucci store) are some of the best memories I have.
If you’re interested in visiting Calebs study abroad blog, visit http://goingabroadtips.com! You can also find Caleb Crum on LinkedIn.