Global Ambassador Series: Coming Out and Going Abroad

The Basics:

Name: Mikaela Schaller

Class Year: 2018

Hometown: Woodbridge, VA

Major: International Relations and French

 

Your Favorite...

...class at Bucknell? Human Rights, IREL 400

...place you've traveled? Trogir, Croatia

...restaurant on Market Street? All Star Bagels 

...song? Drift Away 

...movie? Moulin Rouge 

...book? One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest

...food? Anything pasta related!

 

On Being a Global Ambassador...

1. Where and when did you study abroad? 

I studied in Paris, France during the summer of 2017.

2. What was the nature of your program?

 I interned with L’Association Les Eco Maires, a political organization focused on environmental sustainability.

3. What inspired you to create your specific Global Ambassador project? 

While in France, and traveling around Europe, I really had to pay attention to different cultures and their perception of queer individuals. I want to make other queers' experiences a bit easier to navigate and safer for them to travel. 

4. What was it like to be a member of the LGBTQ+ community abroad? Did any of your experiences relate directly to this part of your identity?

I didn’t have too many issues because I “pass” as straight, but I did meet a lot of queer friends over the summer who really struggled with discrimination in certain European countries. I was lucky that I was in a supportive environment with coworkers who not only didn’t mind that I was queer, but actively wanted to know about my relationship. I also got to attend Paris Pride, which was amazing and eye-opening. 

5. What do you hope the outcomes of your Global Ambassador project will be?

I hope that it will empower Bucknell's LGBTQ+ population to go abroad, and feel more comfortable and prepared for traveling outside of the U.S. 

6. What does "global education" mean to you?

Global education to me means being able to open your eyes and truly experience the world around you. Being open to being uncomfortable occasionally and wanting to engage and learn from other cultures is a huge part of global education.

 

Come hear Mikaela speak on Monday, March 5th at 8:00 p.m. at the Coming Out and Going Abroad presentation. This presentation intends to provide LGBTQ+ students with specific resources for going abroad and spark a frank discussion about being queer in foreign countries, with personal anecdotes from Taylan Stulting (transtraveler.com)