Sarah Bommer

By Zoë Eitel
While she was studying abroad in Peru, Sarah Bommer knew she would have to find a job soon after she returned. When Sarah was looking at on-campus job opportunities, she came across an opening in DePaul’s Study Abroad Office and thought it would be the perfect fit for her Communication and Media major as well as her love of travel.
Sarah now works as Study Abroad’s Social Media and Marketing Peer Advisor, advising her peers on their study abroad options, processing related forms, and running the office’s social media accounts. She is also in charge of the student-run travel blog, so she coordinates posts from students who are on or have gone on study abroad trips as well as handling updates to the site.
“It definitely has supplemented my education by giving me hands-on experience, especially with social media and different marketing campaigns and different initiatives I’ve taken on, like Instagram takeovers,” she says, adding that for the Instagram takeovers, she coordinates with students who are currently abroad, so they can show their trip and experiences to other students.

Study Abroad Social Media and Marketing Peer Advisor DePaul Study Abroad Office

BA Communication and Media 2020

Before this position, Sarah hoped to find a career in social media marketing for a nonprofit, but the more time she spends in this role, the more she says she can see herself doing social media marketing for a university or study abroad provider.
During her study abroad in Peru, all of Sarah’s classes were taught in Spanish, which helped her further her Spanish minor. She says the experience also gave her a more well-rounded, global education.

“Employers see study abroad, and that’s a really good sign. It’s something you can talk about in job interviews because you’re confronted with a lot of challenges to navigate in study abroad and you gain a lot of transferable skills like curiosity and organization, leadership abilities.”

“Not only did study abroad enhance my Spanish proficiency, but I would say it really challenged me to look at culture and education and just daily life from a different perspective every day, and I think that can be really impactful,” Sarah says.
Beyond enhancing her Spanish abilities and teaching her about different perspectives, study abroad has added to Sarah’s resume. She says there are many challenges with studying abroad, but working through them helps you gain transferable skills–such as organization, leadership and curiosity–to bring up in job interviews with future employers.
Taking part in study abroad and working on campus has opened Sarah up to the DePaul community and other on-campus offerings.
“I was working so much, I felt like there was a barrier to me getting involved on campus and in student organizations right away,” Sarah says. “Then once I studied abroad and got my foot in at the Study Abroad Office with this position, it really opened up a lot of opportunities for me to get involved on campus.”
Sarah is part of study abroad related student organizations like GLOBE and the Study Abroad Ambassador program to connect with other students who have done study abroad or those who would like to in the future. As she readies for a second study abroad–this time in India–it is important to Sarah to let other students know that study abroad is an option for them, even if they think it is too expensive or not feasible.
The Study Abroad Office has scholarships to help fund trips, and Sarah says doing your research is important because she found, before her trip, that living in Peru for five months was cheaper than living in Chicago.
“I’m a first generation college student and a low-income student, so it’s important to me for other students to see me an example and think, ‘She did those things, maybe there’s an opportunity for me to do them as well,’” Sarah shares.