Anticipating the Down Under

Background

Hello, travelers! My name is Kaylee Rabatin.

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I am a rising senior in the College of Business Administration majoring in Finance and minoring in both Economics and U.S. History.

I am a three-year member and varsity letter recipient of the women’s varsity soccer team here at Pitt, which has kept me incredibly busy and active. Though our team has had a rather tough go in the past few years, I believe we will make a significant turnaround in the years to come!

As a Finance major, I have looked to gain real world experience in my field. Most notable is the internship position I held last summer. During this time I interned for the Office of Finance at Pitt with focus on our university’s endowment fund. More specifically, I worked closely with the investment team as they made important decisions on how gifts, donations, etc. would be allocated to various funds or investments. It was truly a great learning experience and broadened my understanding of the finance world and the possible career paths out there.

That being said, I am still rather unsure as to where I hope to end up professionally when my time at Pitt as an undergraduate comes to an end. This is one reason as to why I am participating in this program.

In the next few days, I will be traveling to Sydney, Australia for my first study abroad experience. I am participating in the GBI Sydney Summer Program, a 6-week long endeavor, where I will be not only taking a college course, but will also hold an internship position here as well. I will be taking an International Economics class that will contribute to my minor.

This program was a perfect match for my individual needs. Being an athlete, it has been difficult to find a study abroad program that would be feasible with our schedules. The shorter duration of the program as well as tying together both a class and an internship has made it possible for me. And, the ability to do both of these in a foreign country is definitely the cherry on top!

Thoughts and Feelings

When I first read the email stating my acceptance to the program this past February, I was overjoyed. My excitement was unmatched by anything else. To travel to such a large, diverse country while also studying my respective field is absolutely ideal, a true combination of work and play!

As the spring semester wore on, my Australia trip was always in the back of my mind, especially as the deadlines for requirements came and went. But, the trip never truly seemed real to me. Sure, I would tell people, “Oh yeah, I leave for Australia for 6 weeks in May!” (They would be completely jealous.) But still, it never felt like I was actually going.

Writing this post today, I am all packed and ready to head off on this epic adventure, a chance to learn, grow, and experience a new culture, a new life, and so many other new and exciting things. And, it is all starting to feel so real to me, as scary as some of it may be.

I am greatly looking forward to the person, student, and professional I will become throughout my time in Sydney and who I will return as when I come back to Pittsburgh. I hope to gain a more worldly view both personally and  broadly through a business perspective. I also hope to make many connections while abroad, connections not only in the workplace or via networking, but with roommates, classmates, and locals.

I am seeing this time abroad as a once in a lifetime opportunity for me. Who knows whether I will be able to return to Sydney or its corner of the world again? I hope to maximize my time and enjoy every moment I have there. With that, I will end my first post in excitement and anticipation of my long journey to my “new” home!

Kaylee

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