Caitlin Schultz, '10
Caitlin Schultz, ’10, graduated from Muskingum with a degree in journalism. She hails from Central Ohio. Schultz chose Muskingum because “I wanted a small, close-knit college community where I could make a difference and get involved right away as a freshman.”
Since graduation, Schultz has been working as a video producer for state government in Ohio – a job that began through a post-undergraduate fellowship with the Ohio Legislative Service Commission. She is now Assistant Producer for the Supreme Court of Ohio with Ohio Government Telecommunications.
Explaining her current role, Schultz says, “I broadcast official court sessions, lawyer and judge training courses, and video messages from the Ohio Supreme Court justices. My work in Ohio's judicial system inspired me to attend law school in addition to working full-time. I began pursuing a juris doctorate at Capital University Law School in 2012, where I am International Law Society President and am also involved with pro bono (volunteer) legal services to the community.”
During her undergraduate days, Schultz decided to study abroad in China because “I believe that taking the opportunity to do so is essential to understanding the human experience. I wanted most of all to learn about a different culture, but also to learn about being a global citizen. I chose to study in China specifically because I felt I would learn the most in that country; China is quite misunderstood. I wanted a more immersed experience than I felt I would have received in the Western world.”
Schultz studied abroad in China not once, but twice, spending two separate semesters at Lanzhou University. She articulates what set the two semesters apart: “During my initial trip in 2008, I intensely studied the language, learning to speak, read, and write Mandarin with fluidity. Two thousand eight was a defining year for China: not only did it host the summer Olympics, but it also was shaken, literally, by the Wenchuan earthquake, by Tibetan riots, and by other national crises. During my second trip in 2009, I again studied the language and also used those skills to interview Chinese journalism professors and students about government control of media in China, using the recent national events that I experienced along with China in 2008 as case studies.”
Because of her study abroad experiences, Schultz says, “I view the world differently. I am open to new ideas. I actively seek out and argue for opposing viewpoints. Working in the midst of state politics can be challenging and disheartening if one is not able to compromise and to understand a polar-opposite point of view. Studying abroad taught me those skills, made me more confident in my abilities, taught me what it means to work hard and study hard, and allowed me to be comfortable with independence.”
Schultz advises students considering study abroad: “Any college student hesitant to study abroad should simply throw his or her fears aside and just go for it. Have an open mind by not comparing your host country to your home country; just accept the differences for what they are and learn from them. Don't translate to and from English; just open your mouth and mind and speak the language. It will come to you if you don't hold yourself back! Also, allow yourself room to change, because you will change - into a more wonderful person.”