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Enriching by diversity: The importance of a year abroad at Sussex

Katrina Macias

Katrina Macias

“My year at Sussex was a wonderful experience. And since I believe in passing along the good things in life, it is my pleasure to help a United States undergraduate student each year to have the opportunity to expand his or her horizons by living, learning and growing at Sussex.”
Adrienne Drell (ENGAM, 1963), Deputy Chair of the Board of the Friends of the University of Sussex

The University of Sussex is proud of its reputation as an institution with a distinctly international outlook. In fact, Sussex founded the UK’s first ever American Studies programme in the 1960s.

Many US-based students have profited from an exchange scheme with Sussex, and the Friends actively support scholarships to help make this possible – thereby helping to provide the kind of transatlantic educational experience that is so valuable.

By making a gift to the Friends of the University of Sussex, you too can give a US student a taste of our active and vibrant university community, and ultimately change their life. The University pays for all administrative costs, so 100% of what you give will go directly to benefit the student.

The most recent beneficiary of one of these scholarships is Katrina Macias, a student from the University of New Mexico.

“Receiving my scholarship has created an abundance of opportunity for me. I now have the freedom to partake in experiences that would have otherwise been financially stressful. I am so grateful to have the budget to travel throughout England and even other countries. As a result, I have learned a great deal about history, culture, and people.”

Katrina, who is studying Business Management, plans to attend the New Mexico School of Natural Therapeutics after graduating, using her knowledge in business and holistic medicine to pursue her dream of opening her own clinic.

Emphasising that her scholarship will have an impact on her future as well as her time at Sussex, Katrina says:

“Healing through natural medicine is my passion. Because of your help in funding my studies, I feel confident and secure about my upcoming endeavours.

“Thank you for your kindness and for choosing me as a recipient. I am truly moved with gratitude and I will always remember how fortunate I am for this magnificent opportunity.”

Commenting on why she chose to support the Friends, alumna Adrienne Drell says:

“My year as an ‘occasional student’ at Sussex was life-changing in so many ways. I found myself out of the U.S. Midwest for the first time, defending my thoughts and research in weekly tutorials (which I never knew as an American undergrad), meeting wonderful classmates who became friends for life, and travelling all over the U.K. and Europe during vacations. As a result of my wondrous year at Falmer, I later obtained a Master's degree in English, travelled the world, became a journalist, went to law school, was a university professor and never forgot the Sussex Downs and Brighton Lanes.”

And Ms Drell’s philanthropy does not end there. Wanting to offer future generations of US-based students the same opportunity that Katrina has benefited from, she continues:

“I also plan to leave provisions in my will to continue supporting this program."

We are immensely grateful to Adrienne Drell, as well to the many other supporters who remember Sussex in their wills. In the US, alumni and friends can take advantage of a number of unique opportunities to benefit the University in this way, whilst at the same time providing themselves with additional lifetime income and reducing their tax burden. For more information, please visit our Friends webpage.

You can be certain that any gift to the Friends will help transform students’ lives.

By: Emma Wigmore
Last updated: Wednesday, 21 March 2018