(May 14, 2009)
Eugenia Bardossy quietly finished final exams and looked forward to traveling up the East Coast as other seniors graduated from East Carolina University on May 8.
Bardossy, the first foreign exchange student in the Department of Clinical Lab Science in the College of Allied Health Sciences, will graduate in August after sitting for final exams back home in Argentina. She’s also the first biochemistry major from her university, the Universidad Catolica de Cordoba, to study abroad, she said.
When she began looking at more than 100 universities in the United States for an exchange program in her field, only seven offered it. “It’s not very common,” she said.
She chose ECU because of its highly-regarded and well-established clinical laboratory science program and its location. She spent the spring semester here, and was able to travel over spring break to visit her sister who was temporarily working in Colorado. She also explored the Grand Canyon and Las Vegas. Before returning home, she planned to spend a few days in Washington, D.C., and New York, where her grandmother was born, and possibly Boston.
Bardossy said she would definitely recommend a study abroad program to other students. “I think more people should do this type of exchange,” she said. “I really like it. Everybody has been really nice.”
She met other international students from France, the United Kingdom, Netherlands and Mexico while living in White Residence Hall. It was her first time living with other students because her university doesn’t have dorms. Some out-of-town students live in apartments, but she lives at home.
ECU is much larger than her university in Cordoba, but students use many of the same textbooks and references. In Argentina, the medical biochemistry degree is the equivalent of the bachelor’s degree in clinical laboratory science in the United States. “The labs and materials are better here than in my country,” Bardossy said. “You have all the things you need to do your duties well.”
She has kept in touch with her classmates through e-mail, Skype and Facebook, as many of them prepared to graduate too.
Bardossy will take her certification exams and then hopes to work in a lab in a hospital or possibly for a drug company, doing any type of chemistry analysis. She wants to develop a broad background before specializing in any one area. She’s always been interested in science, and has a great role model in her father, who is a pharmacist.
“Eugenia has been an absolutely excellent student,” said Dr. Richard Bamberg, chair of ECU's clinical laboratory science department. “She has coalesced with other students and has a very nice personality. It’s good for her, and good for our students.”
Bamberg said they would welcome the opportunity for another exchange student in the future.