My Story

In honor of Harry Potter’s 20th anniversary, I reflect on what stories mean to me.

As a little girl, my parents often scolded me for staying up past my bedtime. They’d put me to bed, turn off my lights and tell me goodnight. But I rarely listened. Instead, I’d wait for them to leave, listening to their footsteps down the hallway, and spring up to turn on my glass lamp. I wasn’t sleeping yet! But it was not television, games, or movies that my kept me up so late, burning through light bulbs and sitting through scoldings—it was books. And at that, usually Harry Potter. Continue reading

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12 Ways to Travel the World from Home

An expensive plane ticket isn’t the only way to see the world.

When people find out how much I love to travel and all of the place I’ve been, they’re often amazed just how far a girl from Nebraska has made it. The expressions I’m met with when I say I’m from the center of the U.S., completely landlocked, are largely confused. How could someone like me fall in love with countries across the world when I’m not from the big cities like New York or Los Angeles, or even Chicago? It’s easy–I travel the world from home. For all my fellow wanderlusters, here’s 12 ways how I travel the world without even leaving The Good Life in Nebraska, USA.  Continue reading

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Write Your Own Bestseller

My challenge to you is this: Explore. Build a complex character and your story can’t help but be a bestseller.

Incredibly, I was honored to speak at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln’s 2017 Honors Convocation after being invited by Dr. Patrice Berger of the UNL Honors Program as one of 49 Chancellor’s Scholars (graduating with a cumulative 4.0 GPA). I have to admit, I didn’t realize it was such a big deal until I was lining up backstage before the ceremony and a marshal told me I would be speaking right after and sitting next to Chancellor Ronnie Green. That, I think, is when the nerves kicked into high drive. Still, I tried my best to keep a calm head and appear the accomplished senior that my introduction made me out to be.

After delivering it to a few hundred students and parents, I thought I’d throw out my rambles on what made college so memorable for me. Continue reading

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Two Day Shipping to the Other Amazon

A recap of my arrival to the Surama Eco-Lodge and Amazon Rainforest in Guyana.

During my final spring break at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, I was lucky enough to be accepted into my third and final study abroad program: a consulting project for an ecotourism lodge in Guyana’s Amazon rainforest. Though my scratch-off map is pretty filled across the U.S. and Europe, South America was completely colorless before this trip. I didn’t know much about what I should expect, traveling to the middle of the Amazon and to a country I didn’t know much about. But the rainforest proved to be an exciting, challenging, and eventful new experience for me. Even if it was two days of shipping on plane, boat, and van to get to the middle of the Amazon rainforest. Continue reading

17 Side Effects of Studying Abroad

Why you should go to the doctor’s now and ask for a prescription for study abroad.

Studying abroad is one of the most rewarding and influential experiences any college student can have in their four years at university. From growing your soul, wanderlust, stomach, and alcohol tolerance, it’s impossible to return from a life-changing experience like this without being a different person than before. Even coming back home can feel like you’re traveling to a new country for the first time. After my fourth international tour and talking with a few of my other #GenerationStudyAbroad peers, here are 17 side effects I’ve experienced after returning from studying abroad. Continue reading