A career in study abroad was not on my radar when I was an undergraduate student, or even for some time after that. The path that has brought me to the field of education abroad--my chosen field for almost 20 years now--has been very interesting and one I never would have anticipated.

The financial need for a job while working on a PhD led me to take my first job in international education at Texas Tech University. I was their first full-time study abroad advisor and left after a year to become the first full-time study abroad coordinator at University of Texas-Arlington. It’s important to note that I was the first full-timer at these institutions, serving in positions that are now very common. It says a lot about the field’s development in the past two decades. It really is impressive to see the growth of opportunities in education abroad, mostly because it means there is more need for our services. The American mindset is globalizing, albeit more slowly than for most of our liking.

As the field has evolved in the past two decades, so too have the ways we enter it, work in it, and promote it. Now many, if not most, folks working in or wanting to work in education abroad do so intentionally and with quite a bit of forethought.

To help these folks, I will be joining with two colleagues, Seth Riker from the University of Kentucky and Giustina Pelosi from CEA Study Abroad, to host a career panel on “Breaking into Education Abroad,” at NAFSA 2016. We will discuss employment in education abroad from three perspectives on the career continuum: someone who is relatively new to the field; a mid-career professional; and a seasoned campaigner. We will talk about how we each entered education abroad and provide tips for getting into and moving around in the dynamic field today.

We hope to give out some good advice, a few teachable points, and add to the understanding of how our chosen profession is growing and changing.

Join us on Thursday, June 2, from 2:00 p.m.–2:45 p.m., for “Breaking into Education Abroad” in the Career Center located in Four Seasons Ballroom 4.