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Meet the New Director of Study Abroad, David Wick
Position: Director of Study Abroad
Department: Global Engagement Office
Born: Saint Paul, MN, USA
Albuquerque, NM, USA
Lives: San Francisco, CA, USA
Bringing experience from thirteen years in international education and a decade in the advertising and design sector, David joins the SCU community from San Francisco State University, where he served as the Assistant Director of the Office of International Programs. Prior to his six years of experience leading study abroad efforts at SFSU, David served as a Study Abroad Advisor and French Instructor at Arkansas State University. David earned a B.A. from Macalester College, an M.S.E from Arkansas State University, and an Ed. D. from SFSU. In addition to his professional commitment to study abroad, David actively participates in NAFSA: Association of International Educators, Diversity Abroad, and Lessons from Abroad through numerous leadership positions and training opportunities.
Q & A
1. What inspired you to pursue a career in International Education?
My parents were teachers and raised me with a passion for teaching and learning and a belief in the transformative power of education. They also welcomed people from all over the world into our home regularly. My connection to international education began when I participated in a month-long homestay in Guadalajara, Mexico in in sixth grade. Living so far away from home and operating in a second language was challenging and rewarding. Then I was hooked on language and culture and went on to study French and German for my B.A. and imagined that I would become a language teacher. Teaching English in France and Hungary was rewarding, but I found my path with a job coordinating outbound programs at a high school student exchange program. International education and study abroad combine my passion for language, culture, and education in ways that I could not do by focusing solely on language teaching.
2. What attracted you to SCU?
I was drawn to SCU by the the vision to use education to "build a more humane, just, and sustainable world" and the clearly articulated strategic priority of global understanding and engagement. I have focused my scholarship and practice on examining how study abroad and international education can increase equity and social justice and found in SCU an institution that shares these priorities. Since I arrived I have enjoyed meeting faculty, staff, administrators, and students and learning that everyone here embodies and works toward this vision actively.
3. What is something interesting about you that most people wouldn't know?
It rarely surprises people that I, as a study abroad professional, speak five languages and enjoy exploring new parts of the world. My love of performing arts, fine arts, and literature also flows logically from my language and culture background. What may not be as obvious, is that I am an avid birder. I have always enjoyed hiking, camping, backpacking, canoeing, sea kayaking, and rock climbing, then about 15 years ago I joined an Audubon club field trip and, almost instantly, became a birder. Now, wherever I go I seek out places for morning bird walks or local clubs with scheduled field trips. Learning bird identification, behavior, ecology, and conservation has added a wonderful layer on how I see the world that I love to share.
Posted on 11/04/2013