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UNO-Innsbruck Alumni

We hope you had a wonderful experience in the Heart of the Alps, whether you attended last summer or back in 1976 on our first summer program in Innsbruck.  We have assembled a few alumni profiles below, but are happy to add more. Just email us a short testimonial and possibly a picture of yourself in Innsbruck!  Also, please keep us updated if your contact information has changed: innsbruck@uno.edu
We hope to hear from you soon.

Auf Wiedersehen!

The UNO-International Summer School Team


Ohoyo Taylor, The University of New Orleans, 2016

There is never a conversation I have where my study abroad experience does not come up. It is something that I always wanted to do and the Innsbruck program made that happen. I originally chose this program because the staff was so warm and welcoming and for that reason I decided I wanted to be with these group of people. The best thing about this program is location, location, and location. It’s a small quaint town but breathtaking.  My most memorable moment would be our service project to visit refugee kids. They were the smartest and most  beautiful children I have ever met and I keep them in my thoughts often.  I have been back to Innsbruck since my participation in the program because I made long-term friends there. I would do it all over again in a heart beat but this time I would take more pictures, interact more, eat tons more Gelato, and try my hardest to make more of the day trips.  This is an unforgettable experience and to anyone who is considering going my only suggestion would be to just GO!


Karen Burt Coker, Florida State College, 1978 & 2016 & 2018

Travel changes you.
As you move through this life and this world
You change things slightly, you leave marks behind, however small.
And in return, life- and travel-
leaves marks on you.”
-Anthony Bourdain

I participated in the UNO-Innsbruck Summer School in 1978 as a student, and again in 2016 and 2018 as a faculty member for Fine Arts! Young people represent the future. The students in this program are gifted with the opportunity to experience the problems and accomplishment of people in other countries. As they later assume leadership roles in their communities I hope the benefits of their travel experiences will help them become a force in the promotion of world understanding.


Mark Kuss, The University of New Orleans, 1976 & 1977

I participated in the first two summer schools in 1976 and 1977. I also taught on the program in 1995. The experiences as a student changed my life. I entered UNO in the fall of 1974 and looked forward to studying German. By the spring of 1976, I was in the third semester German course when I heard about the summer school. The trip was my first flight and first time out of the south. Upon arrival, my little German worked well and I was able to help other students. I realized first hand that the language rules I learned in New Orleans actually worked. I was also introduced to Dr. George Windell who opened up the world of history to me. I met Austrian locals as well. I have since acquired a PhD in European History and teach at Our Lady of Holy Cross College as well as adjunct at UNO. I cannot adequately explain the impact the program had on my life and I have continued to participate in study abroad programs.


Valencia Scott Colombo, The University of New Orleans, 1977

I will always remember Innsbruck because I met my future husband in Venice, Italy, during the 1977 Innsbruck program. As a Black American, I will always remember being the first and only one that year on the program. I will always be grateful to my parents for their foresight in realizing the importance of studying abroad and defying many odds in order to help me realize this goal. I will always remember speaking to Carl Wagner about the program at the history department of UNO and am thankful for the friendship that still endures today and was forged in 1977. Nick Mueller, Dr. Werner Feld, Robert Aalberts, Elaine, Tamara and many others...too numerous to list here. This program, though fledging at the time, was organized superbly. My parents felt very comfortable sending me abroad to study within such a supervised structure and with competent educators. Education with a taste of internationalism and foreign culture tears down barricades and opens our minds to being more tolerate of others.


Misti Elting, Randolph-Macon Woman’s College, 1994

The experience will last a lifetime!  You also should put a warning label on the program: Caution this program has life-altering effects!  Also, the location is perfect – great central location for trips all over Europe!
You meet students from other colleges and you get to take classes with local students.  I also liked that the classes were connected to field trips-experiential learning at its best! 
The professors were great and I thoroughly enjoyed having authentic New Orleans red beans and rice during exams and meeting Ellis & Wynton Marsalis.  I even stepped out of my comfort zone and participated in a play: Lysistrata.
I love to travel!  I work in college admissions now and I encourage all of my students to study abroad.

Dennis travelled to Romania after Innsbruck and made new friends.

Dennis Michael Broussard, The University of New Orleans, 1998

“The UNO-Innsbruck Program was a life changing experience for me, one that has set the tone for a life-long passion—traveling. I went as a scholarship recipient in 1998 and as a student worker in 1999 and have since made it a tradition to reach a new spot on the globe every year. This was such an enriching experience that opened my eyes, mind and heart to the value of immersion in a foreign land; meeting people, learning new languages, eating exotic dishes and finding new adventures. I absolutely loved my experiences on the UNO-Innsbruck program and continue to relish my memories of Innsbruck.”


Rachael Horn, The University of New Orleans, 2011

“Studying abroad in Innsbruck was the most eye-opening experience in my life.  Seeing how other people in the world live their day to day life has changed me forever.   I feel truly blessed to have had the opportunity to study in Innsbruck and to travel throughout Europe.  Not a day goes by that I do not think about my time in Innsbruck.  The people, the environment, and the culture of Innsbruck have taught me things that I know I would have never learned anywhere else.  The city of Innsbruck was one of the kindest cities that I have ever been to.  I cannot explain how thankful I am for their hospitality and for welcoming me into their world.  I have been told my whole life that “the sky is the limit” and after studying abroad I feel as if I can truly feel the depth of that statement.  It is an amazing learning experience when you can actually be a part of another culture and to truly see the possibilities of the world.”

Coleman Stuart, second from the right, enjoys the view from the Nordkette mountains.

Stuart Coleman, The University of South Carolina, 2011

I was surprised how much I learned outside of the classroom. Being able to travel and experience different cultures taught me more than I have learned in my three years of college. Taking a history class while being in Europe has triggered my interest in World War II, and I have read many books on this topic since then.

It was really neat to meet people my own age from Europe and see that although we are very different, we are extremely similar as well. They helped give us suggestions of things to do and taught us a lot of social etiquette of Europe.


David Reyes, The University of New Orleans, 2012

"Going to Innsbruck was an amazing learning experience in more ways than one. During my summer there, I was able to experience a completely different culture than what I was used to.  I got to meet some of the most interesting people on the program who taught me a lot and will always have a special place in my heart.  The classes, field trips, and extra-curricular activites, facilitated by the program faculty and staff, were so amazing that I will remember them for the rest of my life.  Being part of the Innsbruck Program, and taking the classes that I did, solidified my decision to focus my studies on International Relations. I am genuinely grateful for having had the opportunity of attending this program.  It has allowed me to prepare for my career path and also opened up the doors to my current job on campus with the Division of International Education."


Semaj Crumpton, The University of New Orleans, 2013

"Applying to the UNO-Innsbruck Program was one of the best decisions I’ve ever made! I met so many new people, traveled more than I ever thought possible, and have experiences that I will never forget. The livelihood of the Austrian culture was so amazing, and the people were always so gracious and kind. The hospitality was overwhelming and made the transition from home so much easier to deal with. The faculty and staff were always around when I needed them and would give great advice, whether if it was about where to stop and get gelato or what countries to visit on a three day weekend. I am so incredibly thankful for my summer spent in Innsbruck, and I wouldn’t change a thing for the world. Every now and then I find myself reminiscing about my experiences and hope to be able to visit sometime in the future. Innsbruck, Austria definitely has a special place in my heart and will always be considered a second home to me."



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