UW Rome Center

February 10, 2020

Study abroad “straightens my path to success”

Thomas Le is a Civil Engineering student from Seattle. He studied abroad at the UW Rome Center last summer. We wanted to hear more about his experiences and how he made it all happen, with the help of great support from UW Study Abroad and the UW Rome Center. Here’s what he had to say.

Want to help more students like Thomas study at the UW Rome Center? Make a gift.

Why did you choose the Engineering Rome study abroad program?

The desire to obtain more knowledge and take in different perspectives motivated me to explore different branches within the civil engineering department. I choose the Engineering Rome study abroad program to refine my professional focus and explore 3000 years of history of all Roman Engineering accomplishments. In addition, I wanted to experience what it feels like to live in Rome for 3+weeks as a local, not a tourist.

Describe your program in a few sentences

Engineering Rome is an eye-opening experience to many great adventures and a way to gain more perspective on engineering thinking, culture, and the world. It was a trip of a lifetime and I’m very happy to have experienced it with my peers.

What was something unexpected that you got out of the experience?

I never thought that I would be able to write a professional article related to engineering, but I did it. And now it is published! I also learned how to make Italian food with Chef Andrea Consoli at Cooking Classes in Rome.

Did you have any concerns about studying abroad?

As much as I am passionate about civil engineering and was ecstatic to be offered a spot on a very competitive program, the program fee devastated me when I saw the cost. A huge shout out to UW Study Abroad Adviser Kiana Parker for helping me with applying for scholarships and finding funds to cover the cost of the trip. Aside from that, I had an internship over the summer which helped a lot with covering the cost of the trip.

How will study abroad help you in your future career?

The program expands my knowledge toward different branches in civil. The skills that I gained from Engineering Rome helps shape me to become an ideal civil engineer. It was a factor that straightens my path to success, and I can apply things that I learned during the trip to help me with my future career.