Amy Burrows '00
Motivated by my love for intercultural experience and foreign language, I chose to pursue a dual major in International Affairs (IA) and Spanish at the University of New Hampshire. In fact, I made the decision to attend UNH strictly because of the IA Dual Major program; it required all students to speak a second language, study abroad, and incorporated courses that encouraged critical thinking and expansion of one’s world view. The nine months I spent in Spain, combined with various independent travels, motivated me to further expand my cultural horizons.
Upon graduation in 2000, I applied and was accepted to Peace Corps/Bolivia. I was looking for a new type of international experience, one that truly challenged me personally, professionally, and cross-culturally. After 3 ½ years in Bolivia, I returned with the desire to revisit the world of international academia. The IA Dual Major certainly helped focus my search, and in 2005 I began a Master’s in International Education from the School for International Training (SIT). Currently, I am the program coordinator for BorderLinks, a bi-national, non-profit organization that maintains offices in Tucson, AZ, and Nogales, Sonora, Mexico. BorderLinks is an organization committed to education for social justice and the creation of healthy international relationships. As program coordinator, I work specifically with the Semester on the Border program, a study abroad program in which students learn to analyze critically U.S. foreign policy, the ramifications of the global economy, human rights violations, socio-economic structures, and environmental issues. It is my hope that each student who completes the Semester on the Border program will be personally transformed to become a young advocate for social change and justice.
My interest in this professional track certainly began when I was an undergraduate student. I continue to draw upon the knowledge I gained at UNH, specifically the International Affairs courses. The IA Dual Major taught me to think critically about global issues. It gave me a great foundation for my graduate studies as well as my professional goals in the international education field. As an international educator, I hope to work with a wide range of students, encouraging them to seek multicultural education opportunities. In essence, I want to provide students with opportunities similar to those that I was afforded as an undergraduate. I consider my dual major in International Affairs and Spanish to be one of my greatest investments to date. It has served me well thus far, and will certainly continue to do so in the future.