Kendall Hanley '09 just can't seem to satisfy her curiosity for other cultures after her study-abroad experience in Australia.
Secondhand knowledge of the country from articles, books and pictures became uninspiring, so Hanley decided to get a better perspective on what was really happening outside of her life in the United States.
The zoology major admits the late Steve Irwin, television's well-known "Crocodile Hunter," was the impetus for her decision. After further investigation, the Great Barrier Reef ultimately attracted her to the "Land Down Under."
"Marine biology has really become a focus for me over the past few years," said Hanley, who studied tropical island ecology on San Salvador Island in the Bahamas in 2006.
Thanks to the opportunities granted to her by the Office of International Education at Oswego, Hanley is now confident that she can survive on her own in a foreign country.
"There were a few situations where I really had to think on my feet and figure out a solution to a problem without the advice of others," said Hanley. "So, if anything, I am more independent."
Even though Hanley missed her family, friends and college ice hockey career, she just couldn't pass up the opportunity for her "dream trip" to Australia.
"Between the people I've met, classes I've taken, and adventures I have had ... Oz has by far been one of the most amazing experiences of my life," she said.
In the future, Hanley hopes to continue her travels in New Zealand, Italy, China, Japan or any country that would accept her passport and visa.
She has also posted an Oswego blog that documented her experience abroad.
-- Ashley White '10
Kendall Hanley '09 visits with some kangaroos during her semester abroad in Australia.
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