Keneshia Estimé ’15 is a psychology major with a minor in black studies. A peer advisor in the International Programs Office, she spent six months studying abroad in Stellenbosch, South Africa. The Boston resident has been accepted to UMass Boston’s accelerated nursing program and plans on a career as a psychiatric nurse.
Study abroad in South Africa
I studied abroad in the beautiful country of South Africa the first semester of my senior year. It was the best opportunity I was offered to challenge myself!
I lived and studied in Stellenbosch, South Africa, for six months. In that short period, I was able to learn more about myself than I had in my 23 years of living. The confusion, adjusting to the academic system, and culture shock all highlighted my experience.
Studying abroad means incessantly learning, reassessing, discovering, contemplating, and challenging what you think you know about yourself and the world around you. It helped me figure out who I am and what I’m going to do with my life. I was able to walk in someone else’s shoes, which truly helped me appreciate the little things.
Peer advisor at International Programs Office
Being a peer advisor at the university has been rewarding and helped me figure out the job I would like to obtain post-college. I hope to dispel the stereotype that only “rich” students can study abroad. I want to diversify the students who study abroad, so I plan on working in an international office when I graduate.
My goal is to inspire other students to seize this rewarding opportunity and walk a mile in someone else’s shoes. I help other students find scholarship opportunities to help fund their journey abroad, crush stereotypes students have about a typical study abroad candidate, and inspire students to create their own memories.
The future: becoming a psychiatric nurse
As a psychology major, my focus is helping people. I never really knew what I wanted to do except to go to college, but when I was accepted at UMassD, I was easily shown what my path is.
The diverse classes in the psychology department illustrated the various career opportunities and the faculty have been extremely patient with helping me reach my goal of being a psychiatric nurse. Professor Mark Dumas and his counseling class inspired my concentration. I’ll be attending the UMass Boston’s accelerated nursing program, so I can receive another bachelor’s degree—this time in nursing.