Ep 05: How Hannah Unpacked Her Re-entry Backpack After Studying and Interning Abroad

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Hey there, Forward Launchers!

Today, I’m talking with Hannah Sorila about her journey through processing re-entry and making meaning of her time abroad.

Hannah is a self-described enthusiast for intentional and purposeful international immersion and currently works as SIT Study Abroad’s custom (study abroad) program coordinator.

Hannah’s first re-entry experience came after she decided to study abroad during her junior year with SIT Study Abroad (the same organization that she now works with) while attending Providence College; she studied global and mental health in India, South Africa, Brazil, and Switzerland

Her experiences abroad and during re-entry led her to the world of international education. Hannah worked in the study abroad office at Providence College and volunteered as a Global Ambassador on campus.

After graduating, she became a Content Marketing intern abroad for GoAbroad.com in the Philippines. Living abroad during this time proved to be a challenge, but it shaped who she is today and the direction of the work she does.

Though she is still connected to her global experience and past study abroad girl self, she has been able to connect to the kind of local roots that are possible through fully processing all of the feelings that arise in re-entry, like reverse culture shock and those post travel blues. This process for Hannah took time, but ultimately through unpacking her re-entry backpack she was able to find a place that feels like home.

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In This Episode, We’ll Talk About…

  • Hannah’s biggest re-entry struggle
  • How being on a college campus can make re-entry difficult
  • How the pandemic is thematically similar to going abroad and returning home
  • How Hannah moved into the full identity of who she wanted to become, instead of being stuck in only being the study abroad girl
  • The importance of fully processing emotions and how that shapes your Forward Launch

Resources & Links

If you want to connect with Hannah Sorila, you can send her a request on LinkedIn with a note saying you found her through the Re-entry Roadmap podcast. You can also find her in the Re-entry Roadmap Facebook Group

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About Author

Dr. Cate Brubaker is on a mission to make re-entry after living abroad a positive, transformational force (even when it’s not easy…especially when it’s not easy)! Cate is the author of the Re-Entry Roadmap workbook and the Study Abroad Re-entry Toolkit. Cate has lived in Germany, worked and traveled in 37 countries on four continents, and has helped all kinds of globetrotters successfully navigate global transitions for over 20 years.