Hear from Shocker NSE students

See what Wichita State students have to say about their NSE experiences. 

Luz Aguirre – Bridgewater State University, Massachusetts

Major: Social Work

School: Bridgewater State University in Massachusetts

Semester(s) participated in exchange: Spring 2019

Why did you want to go on exchange?
I wanted to experience a network outside of Kansas.

What did you learn / gain from going on exchange?
I have a better understanding of diversity, connections with other students in the USA & International student, and studying/working in a different setting. 

Carrington Allen – Prairie View A&M University, Texas

Major: Mass Communication and Film

School: Prairie View A&M University in Texas

Semester(s) participated in exchange: Fall 2018 and Spring 2019

Why did you want to go on exchange?
To get away and explore while still continuing my education! 

What did you learn / gain from going on exchange?
I learned a lot about myself! I love to adventure and try new things. I learned my strong suits and places I lack along with gaining independence and growing character. My favorite thing about this wonderful opportunity was being able to try a different setting, something I’ve never seen or have been used to. The outcome of my experience was phenomenal! I recommend everyone to take risk and give NSE a chance! 

Ashlin Bohl – University of Montevallo, Alabama

Major: Marketing

Minor: Communications

School: University of Montevallo in Alabama

Semester(s) participated in exchange: Fall 2015

Why did you want to go on exchange?
I've always been fascinated by the culture of the south. NSE provided an opportunity for me to experience it first hand while continuing my education.

What did you learn / gain from going on exchange?
I went to a place I'd never been before. A place where I didn't know a single person. There are amazing people everywhere, and I gained some amazing lifelong friendships.

Anything additional to add?
I love traveling, adventure and meeting new people. NSE has given me the opportunity to do all three. It has been such an exciting experience.

Lara Brockway – University of New Mexico

Major: Marketing

Minor: Communications

School: University of New Mexico

Semester(s) participated in exchange: Fall 2015 and Spring 2016

Why did you want to go on exchange?
I had never lived out of the state of Kansas before. I wanted to know what it was like to live in a completely different area of the country (the Southwest) at a school almost double the size of WSU.

What did you learn / gain from going on exchange?
I learned how to ski and I gained lots of friends from all over the country and world. I planned my first road trip and hiking 10 miles every weekend was a pretty regular occurrence.

Anything additional to add?
If there is any part of you that wants to try NSE, do it. You will never regret the choice to grow and you will never be the same person again.

Ashley Carpenter –University of Montana

Major: Nursing

Major: Biology

NSE Semester(s): Spring 2019

NSE School: University of Montana

Why did you want to go on exchange?
I wanted to go on exchange to experience a new environment and take new and exciting classes related to my major. I loved the forestry courses.

What did you learn/gain from going on exchange?
I gained a lot of fun memories and friendships from this experience. I also learned to be much more independent.

Anything additional to add?
I have never seen mountains before this trip. I loved hiking but the elevation took a long time to get used to. National student exchange was a wonderful adventure!

Madison Carpenter – California State University, San Bernardino

Major: Human Resource Management

School: California State University, San Bernardino

Semester(s) participated in exchange: Spring 2015

Why did you want to go on exchange? 
I wanted to experience a city other than the one I had lived in for 20 years.

What did you learn / gain from going on exchange?
I learned how to take care of myself and be more independent.

Anything additional to add? 
Even if you're not very outgoing, try to get out of your comfort zone. Otherwise, you may find yourself alone a lot since you likely won't know that many people there.

Jonathan Dennill – William Paterson University of New Jersey

Major: Communication – Broadcast Journalism

NSE Semester(s): Spring 2014

NSE School: William Paterson University of New Jersey

Why did you go on exchange?
To take film and television production classes that weren't offered at WSU, and to live near New York City!

What did you learn / gain from going on exchange?
I learned $1 pizza in NYC is delicious, New Jerseyians have someone at every gas station whose job is to pump the gas for people, and everyone on the East Coast orders burrito bowls instead of burritos at Chipotle.

I gained a lot of perspective about life and living in the moment. In the past, there have been too many times where I was too focused on the small details instead of enjoying the big picture of life. I learned how to not worry about the things in my life that I can't control. I became a better leader from going on exchange.

Anything additional to add?
Any opportunity in life that involves traveling is the one worth taking.

Also, going on exchange is like starting another freshman year of college. Make sure you have a copy of your medical and immunization records with you, meet with an advisor before you leave, and just remember that this experience is truly a once in a lifetime opportunity.

Chelsea Kaiser – University of the Virgin Islands, St. Croix

Major: Marketing and Management

Minor: Accounting

School you exchanged to: University of the Virgin Islands, St.Croix

Semester(s) participated in exchange: Fall 2015 and Spring 2016

Why did you want to go on exchange?
I have always wanted to study abroad or do National Student Exchange since I was in high school. I love to travel and wanted to try something new.

What did you learn / gain from going on exchange?
It’s a once in a lifetime experience and one that I will never forget. I learned so much about myself and was able to experience cultural differences and how different their culture is even though it is a U.S. Territory.

Anything additional to add?
If you have the opportunity to do National Student Exchange then do it! You will not regret your decision as you are able to travel, learn and create lifelong friends.

Caitlin Lee – University of North Texas

Major: Elementary Education

School: University of North Texas

Semester(s) participated in exchange: Fall 2014 and Spring 2015

Why did you want to go on exchange?
To gain a traditional college experience close to a large metropolitan area.

What did you learn / gain from going on exchange?
I learned that the friendships I made in Texas are lifetime, I have options to teach and live outside of Kansas and my opportunities are endless.

Anything additional to add?
If you're thinking about NSE--DO IT! It was one of the best decisions I ever made!

Heba Madi – Sonoma State University, California

Major: Strategic Communication 

NSE Semester(s): Spring 2018

NSE School: Sonoma State University in California

Why did you want to go on exchange?
At Wichita State, I was extremely involved in academics and extra-curriculars. NSE was an opportunity for me to enjoy a semester of college without those responsibilities and a chance to get hands-on learning in my field in a different state. I wanted an NSE experience that would allow me to grow and prosper individually and professionally. 

What did you learn/gain from going on exchange?
I learned more about myself than anything else – my preferences of travel, food, comfort in a new environment. I gained experience with financial planning through comparisons of costs-of-living, time management via California traffic and public transportation, how much I enjoyed grocery shopping at street markets, and so much more. I wrote for the local newspaper and interned with the Women of Color Collective on SSU's campus. In addition, I took in California sights as often as I could; we were 20-30 minutes from the coastline at any point in time. Some of my favorite memories include the Baker Beach with 12 other NSE students, Golden Gate Bridge/Park, watching the Golden State Warriors play at Oracle Arena, hiking in the Redwoods, camping at Yosemite with other SSU students, mochi ice cream in Chinatown, UC Berkley's Botanical Garden, touring Napa Valley, and taking in a whole new campus culture. 

Anything additional to add?
If I could do it again at another college or university, I would! Ask the questions and experience living in another city with the support system of your home and host university. 

Tiffany Nold – University of Montana

Major: Nursing

Major: Psychology

NSE Semester(s): Spring 2019

NSE School: University of Montana

Why did you want to go on exchange?
I wanted to go on exchange to have some new experiences, see some new scenery, and to make new friends.

What did you learn/gain from going on exchange?
I gained more confidence and a lot of new adventures. I also learned to appreciate warmer weather a lot more!

Anything additional to add?
This was one of the best semesters I've had, and though the process and settling was scary at first it was a lot of fun! I'm glad I went with a close friend, I know we have made memories that will last a lifetime :)

England Smith – California State University, San Bernardino

Major: Filmmaking

NSE Semester(s): Fall 2017 and Spring 2018

NSE School: California State University, San Bernardino

Why did you want to go on exchange?
I decided to join NSE to see the world in a different light. During my childhood I was confined to only the midwest and unfortunately never had the means of how to cover the cost. NSE gave me an affordable opportunity to travel, make friends, meet life-long mentors, and allowed myself to find my calling in art in a way I least expected.  

What did you learn/gain from going on exchange?
While on exchange I learned how valuable time truly is. I had an amazing opportunity to meet young passionate artists that changed my perspective, making wonderful short films with classmates, fall in love with analog photography, meet an individual that works at Warner Bros. and go on a tour. My NSE experience has changed my life in a better and I will never forget it. 

Nicholas Steffes – California State University, San Bernardino

Major: International Business

NSE Semester(s): Fall 2013

NSE School: California State University, San Bernardino

Why did you want to go on exchange?
I wanted to explore the west coast and experience what California is like. I also wanted to learn how to surf.

What did you learn/gain from going on exchange?
I learned that Wichita and California both have very unique cultures. They are both great in their own ways.

Anything additional to add?
Going on the trip helped me to be more confident in myself, and it helped me figure out who I am.

Justin Willson – Northern Arizone University

Major: Field Major Chemistry and Business

School: Northern Arizona University

Semester(s) participated in exchange: Fall 2018

Why did you want to go on exchange?
I went on exchange to experience living in a different environment and meet new people. 

What did you learn / gain from going on exchange?
What you get out of this experience is what you put in. Get outside of your comfort zone and you can meet lifelong friends. 

Anything additional to add?
This experience allowed me to grow as a person and discover who I am. I didn't know anyone in Arizona before this journey; however, I have more than 50 close friends because of this program. Anytime I travel to Arizona or California I have a place to stay and friends to catch up with. I recently went on a trip and met a couple friends from Arizona. This is only because I was uncomfortable and made myself meet new people. I would encourage someone to take a light course load when on NSE to maximize the experience. 

 Gallery 

 
  • Shireen Fikree poses with other students in front of their NSE banner project. Fikreestudied at the University of North Texas through National Student Exchange.
  • Chelsea Kaiser swimming with friends. Kaiser studied at the University of the Virgin Islands, St. Croix through National Student Exchange.
  • Chelsea Kaiser snapped this photo of the St. Croix sunset. Kaiser studied at the University of the Virgin Islands, St. Croix through National Student Exchange.
  • Nicholas Steffes snorkeling underwater. Steffes studied at California State University, San Bernardino through National Student Exchange.
  • Chelsea Kaiser sailing with a group of friends. Kaiser studied at the University of the Virgin Islands, St. Croix through National Student Exchange.
  • Nicholas Steffes with a group of kayaking friends. Steffes studied at California State University, San Bernardino through National Student Exchange.
  • Jonathan Dennill visits New York City when he studied at William Paterson University of New Jersey through National Student Exchange
  • Lara Brockway with friends at the White Sands National Monument. Brockway studied at the University of New Mexico through National Student Exchange.
  • Ashlin Bohl attends a University of Alabama football game. Bohl studied at the University of Montevallo through National Student Exchange.
  • Jonathan Dennill poses with the skyline while riding the ferry into New York City. Dennill studied at William Paterson University of New Jersey through National Student Exchange
  • Lara Brockway poses with the Welcome to New Mexico sign. Brockway studied at the University of New Mexico through National Student Exchange.
  • Caitlin Lee attends a UNT football game with a friend. Lee studied at the University of North Texas through National Student Exchange.
  • Madison Carpenter hikes with a friend. Carpenter studied at California State University, San Bernardino through National Student Exchange.
  • Heba Madi poses while hiking in California. Madi studied at Sonoma State University through National Student Exchange.
  • Heba Madi hiking. Madi studied at Sonoma State University through National Student Exchange.
  • Justin Willson touring canyons in Arizona. Willson studied at Northern Arizona University through National Student Exchange.
  • Justin Willson posing while visiting the Grand Canyon. Willson studied at Northern Arizona University through National Student Exchange.
  • Justin Willson spelunking with friends. Willson studied at Northern Arizona University through National Student Exchange.
  • Luz Aguirre posing in the snow with the Bridgewater State University sign. Aguirre studied at Bridgewater State University through National Student Exchange.
  • Ramses Young posing with friend while visiting the Grand Canyon. Young studied at Northern Arizona University through National Student Exchange.