Skip to main content

KNOXVILLE—For Catherine Cheatwood, a senior at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, last year was the busiest and most exciting year of her life.

Catherine Cheatwood
During her semester abroad, Catherine Cheatwood traveled all through France. Here, she is at Mont St. Michel in Normandy, France.

A French major who is minoring in Spanish and secondary education, Cheatwood completed the spring 2011 semester at UT. Then, instead of sticking around for mini-term classes or heading home for the summer, she flew south to spend a month and a half in Costa Rica. There, she lived with a host family while she worked on her tan and her Spanish—all for university credit.

That would be enough of an adventure to satisfy most people, but not this girl. After returning home from Central America, she did some laundry, caught up on sleep, and then packed her suitcases again to spend her fall semester in Nantes, France. During the term, she traveled throughout France and became good friends with many of her fellow exchange students.

“Studying abroad drastically changed my outlook on the world,” Cheatwood said. “Everything that once seemed out of reach now seems like a possibility, and I can’t wait to have more adventures. I also gained so many wonderful friends from all over the world. They helped me learn about many different cultures and, in turn, my own. I wouldn’t trade my time abroad in Costa Rica or France for anything.”

For students looking to have their own life-changing adventures, the best way to start planning is to attend the Spring 2012 Study Abroad Fair. The fair will be held from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. on January 25 in the University Center Ballroom.

“The spring Study Abroad Fair is an ideal time for students interested in summer 2012 study abroad to meet faculty leading those programs,” said Heather Grigsby, programs abroad coordinator at the Center for International Education. “We want to encourage students to take advantage of this opportunity to explore their options before deadlines come up in February and March for summer programs.”

At the fair, students also can find information about semester, academic year, and mini-term programs. They also can explore summer internship options, meet students who have studied abroad and international students from around the world, and speak with UT faculty leading both summer and mini-term programs abroad.

There will be information on scholarships and financial aid, and representatives from advising centers will be on hand to answer questions about studying abroad, building a résumé, and experiencing a world of opportunity.

Students with an interest in study abroad opportunities also can stop by the Programs Abroad Office to talk with peer advisers who have recently returned from their own studies abroad. Peer advisers are on hand at the office from 11:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday and hold general informational meetings at 2:00 p.m. every weekday during the academic year.

C O N T A C T :

Heather Grigsby (865-974-3177,

Amy Blakely (865-974-5034,