Knowles '20 Develops New Love for Education Major While Abroad

Elementary education major Amie Knowles '20 traveled more than 4,000 miles to Rome, where she volunteered to teach English at a local primary school—and learned to connect with her major in a new way.

There are two instances when I can say I fell in love with my field of study. Once in an elementary school in Boston, Massachusetts, and once in a primary school in Rome, Italy. Both allowed me to have a deeper understanding of my life after college and to reflect on myself as a future educator. I am here to share with you how I developed a new love for my major during my time abroad.

It all started when I took the plunge and decided to study abroad in Rome, Italy, during the Spring of 2018. I packed my bags and hopped on a plane as my fellow classmates were diving into their second semester of sophomore year on campus. As many of you may know, the second semester of sophomore year is when students begin to really take a deep look into their majors and begin to discover what it's like within that field of study. I strived to experience those things with my major, but instead of in a classroom, I moved 4,089 miles away to discover them. During my first week of classes abroad, I was given the option to participate in a volunteer program that Richmond in Rome (my study center) offered. When seeing that I could teach English in a local primary school called Regina Margherita, I immediately signed up. Within a week, I was put in a class of 20 to 30 third graders who did not speak English—and that is when the adventure began.

Check out the AIFS blog to learn how volunteering while abroad gave Amie a new perspective—and a new love—for her elementary education major.

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