UGA Biomedical Engineering Senior, Hannah Bass, refused to allow her challenging course load to prevent her from fulfilling her study abroad dreams. Hannah Bass studies biological engineering with a biomedical emphasis and German minor at The University of Georgia. Understandably it can be challenging to study abroad with such an intensive major that requires specific classes, however, Hannah was able to overcome these challenges and study abroad via three separate programs in Germany, Singapore, and England and complete an internship abroad in Uganda – all while still graduating in 4 years! During this time, she was also able to travel to over 20 new countries, marking a total of 33 travelled to throughout her life, all by the age of 21.
Hannah began fulfilling her study abroad dreams as a freshman through the UGA Freiburg Program where she was able to expand her German language skills in Germany. However, this one summer abroad was not near enough and only ignited her passion for travel. Ultimately, Hannah’s junior year was one that most students only dream of having, as she travelled to 27 different countries within a single year. Her fall semester was spent at The National University of Singapore, where she spent her weekends playing with (not riding!) elephants in Thailand, jumping off waterfalls in the Philippines, or traveling to countless other Asian countries. During January, Hannah held a Global Health Internship with Child Family Health Institute in Uganda where she assisted outreach clinics, shadowed clinicians, inputted data for the HIV clinic, and learned about global health and food sustainability topics. She wrapped up her Junior year in England where she studied abroad at The University of Oxford through the UGA at Oxford Program. Here, she attended Keble College as an associate student, completing tutorials in Biochemistry and Microbiology and backpacked across Europe in her spare time on the weekends.
Not only has Hannah made an impact abroad, but she is highly involved on campus at UGA. Hannah has served as the President of the Society of Women Engineers for almost three semesters and as an Engineering Ambassador through the UGA College of Engineering for the past year. She has conducted independent research on obstructed labor through UGA’s Center for Undergraduate Research, and currently volunteers at the Thomas Lay After-School Program and on the Hospital Relations Committee for UGA Miracle.
When asked about how she was able to pull off such an amazing year abroad, Hannah credits her success to planning ahead – she knew she needed to save her more general courses for her time abroad, especially with such a specific major. Hannah wants students to know that studying abroad is “one of the most rewarding and amazing experiences you can have during college.” Most importantly, she wants students who may feel that their majors do not allow space for time abroad to realize that this is not true. She explains that, “while it is definitely easier to go abroad with certain majors, there are so many options that there is always going to be some type of program that can earn you credit for your degree.” Whether this be through a Maymester, summer program, or full semester exchange, by putting in extra effort to get specific courses approved, you can accomplish your study abroad dreams.