Lara Budmats

Horseback riding in the Andes Mountains and learning how to dance the Salsa and Tango were just perks to Lara Budmats' study abroad experience. While staying with a host mom, who made sure there was dinner each night, Lara immersed herself in the culture of Buenos Aires, Argentina for six weeks, learning the cultural nuances that makes the region so special.

Age: 21
Hometown: Palatine, Illinois
Major: Accounting
Minor: Spanish and International Business
Career goal: Certified Public Accountant
Favorite pastime: Horseback riding and running
Current band on iPod: Owl City

Why she studied abroad: “I always knew I wanted to study abroad; I began working with my academic advisor freshman year at Purdue.”

Most memorable moment: Horseback riding in the Andes Mountains.

Notable differences: “I grew up near Chicago, which, of course, is known for its diversity, but living in Buenos Aires was another level of diverse cultures. It was great to immerse myself.”

Trip benefits: “Traveling abroad was such a great experience; it opened my eyes to so many new things.” She was also able to earn credit toward her Spanish minor.

Why Purdue: Looking for business schools, Lara took tours of many different campuses, but when she walked onto the Purdue campus, she fell in love. It was the perfect distance from home—not too close and not too far.

Advice to others who are interested in studying abroad: Lara advises that students do research. “There are so many options out there. Knowing details about what you want to get out of it will help make your decision. Also, check out the availability of grants.”

Next up: Being president of the School of Management Council and running the Chicago Marathon this fall.

By Kate Kester