Dutch Around the World

Since its establishment in 1965, Central College Abroad has been committed to providing rich global opportunities to students across the United States. Nearly 50 percent of Central students study abroad on one of the college’s eight distinct summer or semester-long programs—and it’s a life-changing experience.

Not only do students explore the world, they benefit from cultural opportunities that challenge them and open their eyes to new opportunities. Hear it straight from some of the students and leaders—as Central College Abroad is gearing up for its 50th anniversary next year, students are more excited than ever to share their stories and reflect on their experience.

Have any great stories from when you studied abroad? An amazing internship experience? Or a challenging cultural moment that changed your world view? Sound off in the comments below!


Bangor, Wales

Bangor,-Wales-(9)2“The fall 2013 Bangor group headed to Snowdonia National Park as their first excursion. Walking a mile and a half to the site, the group stopped for a picture at Y Garn Mountain and Lake Llyn Idwal in what is known as the Devil’s Kitchen.” —Tecwyn Vaughan Jones, resident director in Bangor, Wales

London, England

Big BenStudents are just tube stops away from central London where they can explore historical sites like the recently named Elizabeth Tower which houses the world’s most famous clock bell, Big Ben.

Merida, Yucatan

IMG_0882 2Mark Hentschel ’15 takes a dive in a Mexican cenote—a natural, water-filled sinkhole-during an excursion to Tulum, Mexico.

Paris, France

IMG_0146(2)Bienvenue à Paris! Aside from the Eiffel Tower, the Arc de Triomphe is one of the most recognizable sites in Paris and one that students visit often.

Vienna, Austria

Schönbrunn Palace“This is Schönbrunn Palace in Vienna, Austria—it was a great place to visit because it started off as a hunting palace, so the grounds are extensive. They include multiple walking paths and a labyrinth. It also has the oldest zoo in the world that started as an imperial menagerie.” —Erin Baldwin ’14, German and international business majors, studied in Vienna, 2012-13 year

Granada, Spain

8510355751_203d443e0d_b“Our group went to a beach while in Morocco. All of us were so excited to ride the camels, and we were led down the beach by a native Moroccan. It was definitely an unforgettable experience while abroad!” —Madison Drees ’14 (left), sociology major, studied in Granada, spring 2013

Leiden, The Netherlands

Nederlands Tulip Time 074“I took a day trip to Lisse with a couple friends and we had the chance to see the annual ‘Tulip Time’ parade and visit De Keukenhof, a park designed around multiple flower gardens. It was an awesome experience to be able to see the roots of their traditions and how the people celebrate in the Netherlands.” —Bre Stephenson ’14, business management major, studied in Leiden, spring 2013

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  • Chris Stauffer


    1:08 pm on February 26, 2014

    I studied in Leiden the fall of 1997, the study abroad program was one of, if not the main reason I looked at Central to begin with. The semester abroad has been one of the greatest times in my life. Not only the opportunity to experience the culture but I found it to be a time when you had to learn to be on your own, this prepared me for after college. To this day I tell young people to take advantage of abroad programs while in college, it is a good way to plug Central as well.

  • Drew Readel


    2:16 pm on February 18, 2014

    Studying abroad was the greatest decision I have ever made (with the exception of choosing to attend Central)! My experience in Germany and Austria through the Vienna program was incredibly eye-opening, culturally enriching and just so much fun. A handful of students who studied in the program remain my closest friends, and I still keep in contact with international students I met in Germany and studying in Vienna; from Oman to Russia, England to Italy, these connections have made me a more well-rounded person, and have enriched my life in such a way that it is hard to describe. Vienna was great for me because I had visited England, France and Spain with my sophomore French class in high school, so being able to study and visit Central and Eastern Europe was a great opportunity. Happy Anniversary CCA!

  • Richard Phillips


    8:59 pm on February 17, 2014

    My story is kind of oposite. I was an international student from Wales, and studied at central college in the spring of ’99. I met Kellie Steuhm the first week I arrived on campus. Fifteen years later we are married with two beautiful girls. We love here in Pella. Own a restaurant in town and I am the kitchen manager at dining services on central’s campus. So thank you study abroad for having an international program coming this way as it changed my life. Happy anniversary.