Brighton: University of Sussex (Summer)
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Anthony Mitchell

Major: Political Science
Minor: Communication Arts and Sciences, Civic and Community Engagement
Hometown: New Orleans, LA

How did you learn about this opportunity?

I learned about my study abroad opportunity through the Global Programs office. I originally wanted to do a faculty led program in Croatia for three weeks, but that program was cancelled due to low enrollment. After the cancellation of that program, I was contacted by the Office of Global Programs (via email) and was notified of other programs in the region that I was intending to visit. One of those opportunities was what I chose, and I believe that the two months I spend studying in Brighton, England would not have happened if I did not do some online research and program comparisons.

Tell us a little bit about your experience.

The University of Sussex was founded in 1961 and quickly established an international reputation for the quality of its research and for innovative and effective styles of teaching, attracting scholars from all over the world. The International Summer School provides an opportunity to meet and study with people from different countries and cultures, on a campus set in open parkland. The University is about 5 miles from the City Centre of Brighton. Brighton has long been known as ‘London by the sea’ and is less than an hour away from the capital city. During my 8-week program, I had one class twice a week, each class lasting a total of four weeks (for a total of two classes during the 8 week period). The class had built-in field trips pertaining to the course material that were taught in a seminar style format, where students were expected to engage in discussion based critical thinking and learning. The class concluded with an essay composed of what the student wanted to explore based on the content of the course.

How did this experience impact you academically?

This experience satisfies my consultation credits within my Political Science degree requirements and will help play an important role of research for my Civic and Community Engagement minor (CIVCM). I also have a great interest in how government, institutions, communities, and individuals intersect for the betterment of society as a whole. This will serve as great field experience for my CIVCM minor as well as the first of many intended research opportunities going into my master's degree program (public policy with a concentration in community development and civic engagement). I plan to use this experience as a chance to explore and dive deeper into my personal and career interests to develop a holistic understanding of social implications of civic engagement through the lens of both international and domestic politics, intercultural competency, and social reform.

I believe this experience in another country has...inspired me to continue to look beyond the scope of national politics because we are all global citizens.

What are your career goals and plans?  How did this experience impact them?

We live in a globally connected society, where not knowing and understanding the surrounding environment is a detriment to any means of making holistic policy decisions. I am interested in the way that policy and civic engagement shapes communities for the better. After graduating with my degree in Political Science and minors in Communication Arts and Sciences and Civic and Community Engagement, coupled with my experiences of studying abroad at the University of Sussex, I plan to continue my education with a master’s degree in public policy at either Georgetown University in Washington, D.C. or the University of Sussex in Brighton, England. Eventually, I plan to work in the United States government, thereby using this experience to better understand the part that individuals and communities play in shaping societies. It is my hope to someday write policy that will create a better standard of living for the current generations and generations to come.

Would you recommend this experience to other Liberal Arts students?

Yes, I would recommend this experience to other Liberal Arts students. I believe this experience in another country has helped to shape my understanding of and appreciation for other cultures and has inspired me to continue to look beyond the scope of national politics because we are all global citizens. Realizing that what happens in other countries is important to what happens in the United States, as well as the inverse, we have an obligation to learn about and explore the world around us.

For more information on global opportunities for Liberal Arts students, visit our website.
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