by Raymond Devine
An alumna from Chestnut Hill College is currently having an academically rigorous and diverse experience as she studies for her master’s degree in Italy.
Anna Abbot ’18 is pursuing a master’s degree in international relations, with a specialization in economics, at the Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore in Milan, Italy.
Following her graduation in 2019, Abbot hopes to work for the U.S. government. So far, she has successfully completed most of the interviews and background checks required for the occupation in which she is interested and toward which her professors at the College laid a path.
Regarding the choice of Europe as a place to study, Abbot said she had always considered obtaining her master’s in Europe after traveling there for a CHC-sponsored study abroad program in spring 2017.
“If I want to study international relations, it is best to study abroad, especially learning a second language,” Abbot said.
The majority of Abbot’s professors in Italy work either with the European Union or with the United Nations. She added that class in Italy is very formal: Everyone is dressed in proper attire, classes begin and end at the exact minute they’re supposed to, and classes are never let out early. Like in many classrooms in the U.S., Abbot said exams are conducted on the computer.
Adding to the international atmosphere, Abbot’s roommates are from the U.S., Italy, India, and Hungary; further, her classmates are from Italy, Brazil, Palestine, Bulgaria, and Oman.
Abbot expressed gratitude to her former professors and advisors at the College for helping her along her academic journey and guiding her toward a future career. In particular, she mentioned the generosity and guidance of Julie Currie, J.D., professor of criminal justice; Sara Kitchen, J.D., professor of criminal justice; Lauren Barrow, Ph.D., associate professor of criminal justice; and Jean Faustman, SSJ, DML, associate professor of French and Spanish.
“Professor Currie helped jump start my career by helping me obtain an internship with the federal government,” Abbot said. “It was through this internship that I realized I wanted to work in the government.
“Professor Kitchen offered law school advice and helped sculpture the potential path for my future, with valuable insight along the way. Sister Jean encouraged me to study abroad and expand my horizons — she has always pushed me to pursue options I thought unreachable. And Dr. Barrow, since I was a freshman, has guided my future and always offered me valuable advice and encouragement.”
In speaking of her time with this group who ushered her along the way, Abbot said, “I have had several professors at Chestnut Hill College who have had an enormous impact on who I am today. All of these incredible educators have pushed me and helped me reach outside my comfort zone, for this is where I will reach success.”