Meet the Staff
Virginia Hosono, Ph.D.
Director, Office of Study Abroad and International Travel
- Describe your role in the office --- As director, for the Study Abroad and International Travel section of the International Center, I function as the director, coordinator and overseer of all aspects of the Study Abroad programs, including international exchange programs. I look to enhance and evaluate current and potential programs and facilitate in the development of new offerings. Additionally, I manage, coordinate and oversee all aspects of undergraduate, graduate, faculty, staff, and group international travel. I am responsible for overseeing student recruitment through the marketing of study abroad and exchange programs. I serve as the campus-wide liaison to ensure consistent procedural application across Units in regards to study abroad and international travel. Finally, I direct and manage the operations and strategic growth of the Office of Study Abroad and International Travel.
- Education --- PhD, Comparative Humanities: Lacanian Gaze, Semiotics, and the Enigmatic Bosch, UofL
- Hometown --- Chi-town!
- Countries traveled to --- Japan, Mexico, Canada, Greece
- One country you want to visit --- Iceland and Slovak Republic
- How do you prepare for international travel? --- When preparing to go to a new location I spend time researching local activities. I like Lonely Planet as a source for information. I also check out the State Department’s travel site to get information on passport validity, vaccinations, safety & security, and local laws & special circumstances. I look at local fashion, if women are wearing dresses, I probably won’t be wearing shorts! I will ask friends and colleagues if they have been to where I am going and ask for recommendations on what to eat, where to stay, and what to see.
- What do you enjoy doing when you aren’t working? --- I enjoy participating in local events and trying new food venues.
- What would you want to be famous for? --- Helping others reach their goals.
Elizabeth Liebschutz-Roettger, Ph.D.
Manager of Global Initiatives
- Describe your role in the office --- As part of the Study Abroad team, I oversee the international exchange/MOU agreements, International partner development, and opportunities for research and academic exchange among faculty. I work with the various Colleges across campus on their international partner development. In addition to working with our agreements, I work closely with our students participating on exchanges as well as students who live in our international residential Themed Community.
- Education --- PhD-Counseling and Personnel Services: University of Louisville; MS- Social and Philosophical Studies in Education: University of Kentucky; MA- Human Services and Counseling: DePaul University; BA-French: Lake Forest College
- Hometown --- Danville, KY
- Countries traveled to --- France, Spain, Germany, England, Ireland, Croatia, Hungary, Netherlands, Belgium, Luxembourg, Norway, Poland, Italy, Switzerland, Czech Republic, Austria, Scotland, Canada, China, and 8 islands throughout the Caribbean.
- One country you want to visit --- Any? All? Thailand, South Korea, Japan, Costa Rica, and Australia
- How do you prepare for international travel? --- Lists, lists, and more lists. I think about what I need to take clothes-wise (and what might be over packing), I make lists of things I would like to do in various locations. I look up the best ways to travel to/from the airport/train stations in my destinations. As I often travel for work, I create a physical folder of documents I will need while I am traveling. I also like to look into the apps that might be helpful to download for my destinations such as a map of the public transportation.
- What do you enjoy doing when you aren’t working? --- My reality is, if I am not working, I am usually running around to my children's sports/school/STEM events or at home with my co-dependent dog. However, I read a lot (a lot!), often attend concerts, or enjoy musicals at Kentucky Center for the Arts. I love to cook and travel with my partner and kids.
What would you want to be famous for? ---I would be famous for either being an author or something involved with cinematography (movies or music videos). I think the latter is influenced from my semester abroad in Cannes and getting to experience the Cannes film festival first-hand.
Melissa Lee, B.A.
Study Abroad Advisor
Describe your role in the office --- I advise students on the study abroad process, process registrations, process transcripts and process insurance for all international travelers. I also order supplies, process payments, and other fun budgeting stuff.
Education --- BA in Psychology & BA in Communication, UofL
Hometown --- I am a Military Brat. I was born in Abington, PA, but I consider Louisville my hometown.
Countries Melissa has traveled to --- Cuba, Canada, Costa Rica, Spain, Australia
One country Melisa wants to visit --- Italy
How do you prepare for international travel? --- The first thing that I do when preparing for international travel is to make sure that I have physical and electronic copies of all of my travel documents such as my passport, flight itinerary, lodging information, immunization records and driver’s license. I email a copy of all of my documents to myself and to my family members. I pack a week prior to my trip, so that I can ensure that I’m not forgetting anything.
What do you enjoy doing when you aren't working? --- I enjoy crafting and spending time with my family.
What would you want to be famous for? --- I would want to be famous for making a positive impact on the world in some capacity.
Kimber Guinn, M.A.
Study Abroad Advisor
Fulbright ETA, Romania, 2018-2019
- Describe your role in the office --- I plan on-campus/virtual events, develop marketing and social media campaigns, and advise students on study abroad opportunities and procedures.
Education --- M.A. in Higher Education Administration, UofL & B.A. in International Studies, University of Kentucky
Hometown --- Somerset, KY
- Countries Kimber has traveled to ---Canada, Ecuador, Ireland, England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland, Norway, Sweden, Greece, Italy, The Vatican, Hungary, Poland, Germany, France, Spain, Switzerland, Portugal, New Zealand, Fiji, Iceland, Costa Rica, Colombia, The Netherlands, Romania, Moldova, Israel, Jordan, Belgium, Lithuania, Cyprus, Denmark, Czech Republic, Turkey, Austria, Bulgaria
- One country Kimber wants to visit --- Thailand
- How do you prepare for international travel? --- Make a packing / outfit chart based on expected weather. Combine all research into an offline accessible Google Document to include my: flight itinerary, lodging, in-country transportation options, list of attractions I want to see detailing their cost (if any), opening times, address, and other relevant information.
What do you enjoy doing when you aren't working? --- I often play fetch with myself because my 13 year old Golden Retriever is lazy. I love to garden, read, and sew.
What would you want to be famous for? --- Inventing a shrink ray so I can take my dog with me when I travel.
Wadi Rum, Jordan
Rebecca Dixon, M.A.
Describe your role in the office --- I facilitate the approval process for faculty/staff/non-study abroad student international travel and for faculty-led group trips.
Education --- M.A. in French, UofL & B.A. in English and in Foreign Languages & International Studies, Bellarmine University
Hometown --- Louisville, KY
Countries Rebecca has traveled to --- Canada, France, Ireland, England, Austria, Italy, Martinique, Ecuador
One country Rebecca wants to visit --- New Zealand
How do you prepare for international travel? --- I make lots of lists! (Then try to do all the things on the lists.)
What do you enjoy doing when you aren't working? --- I enjoy reading, writing, and hiking.
What would you want to be famous for? --- I’d rather never be famous! I’m way too introverted. At the same time, I wouldn’t say no to being a successful author.
Lexie Phillips, B.A.
- Describe your role in the office --- As the Graduate Assistant here in the Study Abroad office, I help in any way that I can. This includes: assisting with transcripts, data entry regarding past and upcoming trips abroad, and answering any other questions that may arise through phone or email.
- Education --- BA in Psychology, NC State University
- Hometown --- Charlotte, North Carolina
Countries Lexie has traveled to --- Bahamas, Canada, Haiti, Jamaica, Mexico
One country Lexie wants to visit --- Italy
- What made Lexie interested in being our GA? --- I have always dreamed of traveling the world. I had plans to study abroad in May of 2020, however, my trip was cancelled due to COVID-19. As a part of the Study Abroad team, I am broadening my knowledge of other countries which makes me even more excited to travel in the future.
What do you enjoy doing when you aren't working? --- I love going for runs, spending time with friends and family, and trying new food spots!
- What would you want to be famous for? --- Singing, unfortunately it’s not something I am good at, but wish I was!