Global Stories

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Hear from study abroad alumni, international student alumni, and Temple alumni working internationally as they share their favorite Temple memories and global experiences.

Frank Criniti , TYL ’91
Studied abroad at Temple Rome, 1988
Architectural firm owner & operator

“I spent a semester in Italy with classmates and new friends. Studying there was life changing and helped shape my view of the world and my place in it.”

Ana Bhowmik, CST ’20
International student from Bangladesh
Post-grad plans: High school math teacher for ACE charter high school

“Coming to a different country without knowing anyone was difficult, but Temple felt like home from the very first day. I still cannot believe I found my best friend and current roommate during my orientation. I also worked for the International Admissions office, and they became a family for me. Their motivation and belief is what got me so far.”

Mali List
Studied abroad at Temple Rome, spring 1994
Time management coach & productivity trainer

“Temple Rome is one of the highlights of my life. One of my roommates on the program, Lisa, is still a close friend. Temple Rome, especially, my art history professor taught me to see beauty in everything, even if on the surface it was ugly. And so the Basilica de San Paulo became my favorite church for being unlike the others—dark and dreary. I even wrote a paper for my art history class in the how beautiful the church is because it is ugly.”

Kate Moyer, KLN ’06
Studied abroad at Temple Rome
Community relations officer

“I will never forget the first time I saw the Vatican. It was my first night in Rome and my roommate and I were walking with some new friends to Piazza Navona from the residence on Via Medalglia d’Oro. After walking down the hill from the residence, we came upon this very tall, very long wall and our route had us following it for a ways. I had no idea what the wall was; I could tell it was old and strong but thought nothing of it. I casually ran my fingers along it’s rough surface as we walked on. The wall curved to the right slightly then ended and suddenly revealed St. Peter’s Square which was glowing with lamp light as the sun had already set. An audible gasp erupted from each of us as we laid eyes on the square and then the overwhelming beauty of St. Peter’s Basilica. We had been clueless to the fact that we’d been following the walls of Vatican City and were wholly unprepared for the enormity of the sights beyond them. The square was nearly empty but for us, and I don’t think I breathed for an entire minute as I tried to take it all in. It was a tremendous surprise and laid the groundwork for so many other experiences where the treasures of Rome are found just around an unassuming corner. We shoved our digital cameras into the hands of one of the people with us and they took a blurry picture of my friends and I BEAMING like little kids on Christmas at this turn of events. The walls soon became my regular running route and I like to tell people that when I lived in Rome I ran around an entire country every morning! I replay that evening walk in my head often and each time I am able to recall the sheer delight at glimpsing the Square that way, that evening.”

Neo Ramputswa, FOX ’20
International student from Botswana
Post-grad plans: Pursue my MS in international and development economics at the University of San Francisco, California

“I loved being a Peer Advisor at the Academic Resource Center and a Peer2Peer Mentor, which allowed me to to uplift and support others as I climbed up the academic ranks here at Temple. I will miss the campus life, especially the food trucks that represented just how diverse this campus is.”

Charleanne “Chuck” Rogers, CLA ’20
Studied abroad in South Korea through Global Good, summer 2019

“My time abroad has taught me to accept more flexibility into my life. I used to very stubbornly stick to a schedule, but since being in Korea especially in Seoul there was so much to do and look at. I never knew when I was going back to Korea so I would always attempt to keep an open schedule besides class, so I could get ready to go on the next adventure. Accepting the adaptability, has put me at a better situation to be able to manage any situation that I am thrown into!”

Xinjian Li, TYL ’20
International student from China
Post-grad plans: Work in graphic design in New York or California

“I joined tons of clubs and events, which really helped me to build my personality and broaden my horizons. I’ll miss the people who always helped and supported me, and my first job as a student worker in the Office of International Affairs. Temple gave me so many memories!”

Ritapa Neogi, CLA ’20
Studied abroad in Barcelona through IFSA, fall 2019

“Traveling abroad as a geography and urban studies major, I became interested in international planning and development. At Temple and other American universities, it can be very difficult to find academic coursework on a more international scope of city planning, but taking classes in Barcelona gave me the opportunity to do so. I had also never traveled abroad alone before, so getting out of my comfort zone and exploring Europe was a new experience for me.”

Emily Phillippy, TYL ’12
Studied abroad at Temple Rome
Owner of Emily Chelsea Jewelry

“I became a jewelry designer and I’ve made many engagement and wedding rings for other people I studied abroad with. It’s always so special when they reach out to me and they always lead with, ‘I don’t know if you remember me, but we studied abroad together in Rome…’ Of course I remember them! I also studied abroad with the cofounder of Modern Fertility… and I remember when I met her in Rome I knew she would go on to do something incredible.”

Katie Gerst
Taught at Temple Rome, 2012 & 2016
Associate Professor at Fox School of Business

“Here we are in Lago Albano in 2016. Clockwise from left: Caitlin de Santi, Hope Gustafson, me, Jillian Harris, and Gianni Marangio.”

Mei Hong, Tsinghua Master of Law, ’20
International student from China

Mei shares his experience with the coronavirus pandemic and online learning this past year.

Emily Cwyk, TYL ’14
Studied abroad at Temple Rome, fall & spring 2012-13
Art museum administrator

“I had to complete a project where we had to go back in the Vatican for research. I remember we went after class and I thought it would be too late and crowded. We walked through the entire museum until the Raphael rooms without seeing more than 5 people. I thought we somehow walked through a do not enter sign. It was amazing to have the chance to wonder around one of the busiest museums in the world without anyone around but my friend for company.”