Alumni Spotlight: Diandra Freese

Diandra Freese studied abroad with ISA in Seoul, South Korea and is a student at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. Diandra interned for a tourism company called, Adventure Korea, before returning home as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. We reached out to Diandra to learn more about how her internship and how her experience in South Korea impacted her personal and professional development.

  1. What was your internship in Seoul and what was your favorite part?

For my internship in South Korea, I was working for a tourism company called Adventure Korea. I enjoyed all the tasks given to me, but my favorite in particular would be writing trip reports. As an intern, I was given the opportunity to tag along on trips organized by the company, and I would also work as a tour guide on some of the trips. After each trip, I was given the task of writing a trip report, which would explain in detail what we did during the trip and it would include pictures to serve as a visual aid. Writing trip reports became my favorite task because it allowed me to look back on the amazing adventures I was a part of and made me feel like I was experiencing the trip all over again.  

2. What inspired you to intern abroad in South Korea?

Ever since I was little I’ve had such a passion for travel and tourism. I’ve never been abroad prior to my internship, but I’ve always been fascinated with the culture and history of Korea. The country has so many opportunities for tourism, which is what motivated me to look into internships in Korea.  

3. Tell us about your experience leaving early as a result of COVID-19. What were your main takeaways from this experience?

I was only halfway through my internship when I received the news on having to evacuate South Korea due to COVID-19. Having to leave the country was one of the most heartbreaking things I’ve ever experienced. Within the six weeks I was living there, I fell in love with the country, it’s culture, and the people. I adjusted very quickly to life there, and I felt like it was too soon to leave when there were so many more adventures I had yet to take. The company I was interning for became my family and I wasn’t ready to leave them behind.  

I am so thankful for the chance to have finished my internship remotely. There was still so much work I wanted to do for the company, so I’m glad I was able to complete these tasks from home. I enjoyed each task I was given because it allowed me to gain more insight into travel and tourism industry in Korea. I will forever cherish the memories I made in Korea and at my internship. 

4. What’s next for you?

I actually plan on returning to Korea later this year to teach English. The country and its people left such a positive impact on my life that I am eager to return as soon as I can. After I spend time teaching English in Korea, I plan on looking for tourism opportunities in the country. My internship impacted these goals because interning in Korea opened up another world of discovery and adventures. It’s the reason I started looking into job opportunities that would allow me to return to work in the country. Had I not chosen Korea as my internship location, I never would’ve made the amazing memories that I did, and I can’t imagine life without this experience.  

Inspired by Diandra’s journey and want to discover your own while immersing yourself in an abroad experience? Fill out your details below to let our team know and we’ll help you find your adventure today!

Leave a Reply