Life beyond Loras
Dalton Oberfoell (TheLorian)
When students are weighing out their plans for school, not many take notice of some of the various offices that the school presents to them. While the Center for Experiential Learning Office (CEL) may not be the top reason for students choosing Loras College, it certainty is one of the most beneficial offices on campus. CEL and its dedicated staff members go above and beyond to help Loras students gain experience beyond the classroom in the form of internships, study abroad, resume building, mock interviews, and various career forums. CEL’s reach goes far beyond the hills of Loras and the bluffs of Dubuque. It extends across the United States and even across oceans, connecting current students with opportunities all over the world and country.
It is in my personal opinion that the CEL office is one of the most valuable resources that students can access. Speaking through experience I was able to travel to the other side of the planet to study in a different country. With the help of the CEL office I was able to identify a program and school to attend in Sydney, Australia. Having the opportunity to live aboard for a semester was one of the best decisions that I have ever made. Learning how to live and adapt in a different part of the world was massively beneficial for my personal growth. Not only that, but academically immersive by being able to learn from completely different perspectives. It also wasn’t awful living next to a beach and communing with what seemed to be every single colorful bird in existence. Nevertheless, my time in Australia exposed me to so many people from all over the world and forced me far outside of my comfort zone. Because of the many skills and experiences that I developed and had through my study abroad experience I will be pursuing my master’s degree entirely abroad. None of which would have been possible if not the experiences I have had the privilege of experiencing through the CEL office.
While I could talk about my experiences all day long they are only one part of CEL. CEL provides Loras students with so much opportunity it is hard to fit it all into one piece of writing. Even beyond what CEL can offer it is staffed by some of the nicest people on campus. People who take the time to get to know you and take an interest in your life and future plans after Loras. While many students may only get a glimpse of what is offered by the office when visiting, the Center for Experiential Learning deserves a exploration by every single student.