My name is Aurora Venegas, I’m 21, and I am a senior at ECU. My major is Security Studies, and my minor is in Russian Studies. 

Where Did You Study Abroad?
I studied abroad in Saint Petersburg, Russia. I was there for about 3.5 weeks and it was a faculty-led program. 

What Is Your Favorite Memory From Your Time Abroad?
I have many memories from my time in Russia that I hold close to my heart. One of my favorites is visiting The Hermitage, it is the second largest art museum in the world. The Hermitage is also really close to Winter Palace which holds so much history. It was fascinating to be go to The Hermitage and see all of the art that was in there and the rooms where royalty lived in. 

How Has Study Abroad Helped Your Personal and Professional Life?
Studying abroad has helped me personally by allowing me to have the chance to experience new cultures and language. I love learning about different countries and their cultures, language and people. Sharing all of this has made me a better person, and it has made me want to travel even more.

What Advice Can You Offer to Students Interested in Studying Abroad?
Many people who studied abroad, including me, would simply tell students to simply do it. Studying abroad will change your life for the better and make you into a different person. One important advice I have is if you have the opportunity to stay with a host family instead of a dorm, please stay with a host family. Staying with a host family is the closest thing you’ll have to experience the culture and how a family lives in a different country. It creates new relationships that will last a lifetime. 

Email Aurora at for more information about her experience!