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Meet TU’s 2018 Global Graduates

The Center for Global Education is proud to announce TU’s 2018 Global Graduates. These six students were selected by a panel of TU faculty and staff from a pool of highly competitive applicants. All of our 2018 Global Graduates engaged substantially in international experiences and opportunities while attending the University of Tulsa. Additionally, these students were deeply involved in the campus and/or Tulsa community, maintained impressive GPAs, and intend to continue living and working as a “global force for good” upon their graduation from the University of Tulsa.

Jennifer Albertson

Nursing and Spanish double major from St. Louis, Missouri

“Through living with a wonderful host family, I learned about other aspects of the culture and was able to immerse myself in the language, which was instrumental in improving my Spanish skills and working towards my ultimate goal of fluency. The semester after I studied abroad, I was able to further refine my translation and interpretation skills through an internship at TU’s Boesche Legal Clinic. Through this experience, I have grown in my desire to help the Hispanic immigrant community through language and healthcare services.

This summer, I plan to take my nursing licensure exam as well as pursue avenues to serve others while growing in my Spanish language skills. After that, I hope to begin a Graduate Nurse Residency Program in the fall and start my career as a nurse in St. Louis.”

Read Jennifer’s full profile.

Renan Kuntz

Chemical Engineering major from Toledo, Brazil

“I am an international student from Brazil. I have been able to share my culture on campus through events with the TU Brazil Club, mentoring programs such as the LINC program, and Cane Connections. I studied abroad in Spain, where I also volunteered with a local non-profit. There, I was a mentor in the after-school program, teaching English to teenagers from at-risk families. Additionally, I was a volunteer at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games on the International Relations and Protocol team and I had a summer internship at Unilever Brazil as a Supply Chain intern.

My experiences have broken all limits that I had put onto the reach of my journey. I see now that (1) I would be happy working anywhere in the world, (2) whatever I end up doing will have the potential to impact people in other places of the world; the world seems smaller, (3) the international community of friends I have made can become strong partnerships for international projects and knowledge-sharing.”

Read Renan’s full profile.

Abbey Marino

Sociology major from St. Louis, Missouri

“I came to college with one end goal: to graduate and become a doctor. From day one of my global challenges class, however, I had an inkling I could do more. My junior year, I studied abroad in Khon Kaen, Thailand where I served as a guest journalist for the online news magazine, The Isaan Record, and published three public health-related articles. I co-wrote a two-article series about a patient’s experience with the Thai healthcare system. Because of his poverty and rural status, this patient, Dieow, struggled with access to care and transportation to proper facilities. Readers commented, exclaiming gratitude for living in a country with such “easy access to healthcare.” Returning to the States amidst healthcare repeal attempts captured my attention. I spent the summer live-streaming debates, attending lectures, and asking everyone I knew for their opinions. Between those conversations and the feedback on my article, I realized how blind individuals can be to the struggles of citizens living in their own neighborhoods. For every Dieow in Thailand, there is a human being living on American soil facing similar struggles.

Traveling has given me access to vulnerable populations and exposure to the power of a single story. My experiences abroad have not only shifted my way of thinking, but they have also influenced my life’s path. Because of these experiences, I no longer want to be a doctor; I want to pursue a career in policy and public service. I want to bridge the gap between assumptions and subsequent actions by sharing stories and pulling people out of their comfort zones, encouraging them to think about life differently.”

Read Abbey’s full profile.

Ryan Starkweather

International Business and Language and Chinese Studies double major from Tulsa, Oklahoma

“The Global Scholars program introduced me to a holistic global perspective, connecting my four years at TU to challenges the world faces. Through its courses, programs, and both Dr. Foley and Dr. Collins, I have made connections that reach beyond my hometown of Tulsa that would have never been possible without their guidance. Framing issues my generation will face such as sustainability, population growth, and conflict as problems that extend through national borders changed the way I think about contributing to solutions to these challenges and inspired me to pursue a career in foreign affairs.

Ultimately, the University of Tulsa granted me the experience and education needed to be selected for a highly competitive internship with the U.S. Department of State. In Washington, D.C. I met few people from Oklahoma and realized how rare it is for someone from my home state to have an interest in foreign affairs strong enough to pursue it as a career. If I had not studied at the University of Tulsa, my perspective would never have been pushed beyond the borders of my home state or country. The University and professors like Dr. Foley, Dr. Collins, Dr. Zhang, and Dr. Troilo and many others connect students like myself to passions beyond their perspectives. I am grateful for a University so dedicated to exposing its students to worlds outside their own, and for supporting myself and others in ways we never imagined.”

Read Ryan’s full profile.

Teresa Stastny

Management major, specializing in Innovation and Entrepreneurship and minoring in International Business, from Omaha, Nebraska

“Before attending TU, I had never left the U.S. Now, I have visited 10 countries and am headed to number 11 the day after graduation. I have gained the confidence to move to another country and navigate it on my own. But the truth is, none of us are ever truly alone. Studying abroad has taught me that there are amazing, generous, passionate people all over this planet and that you don’t have to share a culture, or even a language to connect in meaningful, life-altering ways.

I am currently working with three entrepreneurs at Paige Hulse Law, Hayley Bigham Designs, and Weddeo. Through these internships, I have been learning the ins and outs of web design, digital marketing, content creation, and growing a small business. In doing so, I have freed up time for the entrepreneurs to work with their craft and clients. I hope to continue working with these companies while I growth my own brand, Mess No Stress – a community of people learning to live their fullest, low stress life, even when they feel like their life is a mess.

I plan to move to Scotland in the early fall, to try my hand at living abroad without the security of a school program. I hope to dive deeper into the creative culture of Glasgow, a city I was fortunate enough to visit while studying in Ireland.”

Read Teresa’s full profile.

Vandit Trivedi

Petroleum Engineering and Mathematics double major from Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

“As President of the Association of International Students, I have worked with such a diverse group of students: people from Brazil, China, Saudi Arabia, Oman, Malaysia, Indonesia, Myanmar, and many other places. And those people constitute a variety of age groups as well. Some freshmen, and some who are far more experienced than I am with event planning and organization work. Dealing with both ends of the spectrum and getting the team to function effectively has been a challenge. I actually don’t believe I have done the job as well as I could have. The success of AIS events has been largely down to the team’s efforts. But I have learnt a lot.

For when I do go out for a leadership position, perhaps in a company in the future, I will have not only worked with people of a variety of cultural backgrounds, I will also have worked with people on different ends of the experience spectrum. Of course, corporate leadership or leadership in any other context will present new challenges. But this experience will guide me on how to deal with that struggle. Which is why I would like to thank my team, who have contributed to this international experience, and helped me become a Global Graduate.”

Read Vandit’s full profile.