Psychology Major’s European Adventure Highlights the Impact of Keuka College’s Field Period

Fourth-year student Kaylee Hodge expanded her understanding of her major – and the world – during a summer trip to Germany.

Tuesday, June 11, 2024

Keuka College’s Field Period® program has a deep history of providing life-changing experiential learning opportunities for students in all disciplines.

Just as importantly, it expands horizons, elevating students from local learners to global citizens.
Psychology major Kaylee Hodge can attest to that.
Her exploratory Field Period® experience last summer – three weeks in Hilden, Germany, with visits to Amsterdam and London – not only enabled her to explore different aspects of her major with professional psychologists, it magnified her love of architecture through tours of historic churches, and provided opportunities to immerse herself in the vibrant, cosmopolitan settings of European cities.
That’s an enriching experience in more ways than one for a product of rural New York whose high school graduating class numbered 32 students.
“I grew up in a small town where everything was always the same,” says Kaylee, now a senior. “So, I wanted to learn about the culture in Germany. Their way of living was so different than ours. And I wanted to learn about that because it’s always interesting to see other points of view.”

Visiting Germany was a lifelong dream for Kaylee, who has family friends in the country. In fact, her host mother in Germany, Yvonne Meiners-Hunger, stayed with Kaylee’s parents as an exchange student before Kaylee was born and has returned to visit the family most years since.
“It was nice having someone that I knew, especially to translate,” said Kaylee, who admits her German is scant. (“I know ‘nein.’”)
With a personal translator and a busy itinerary, Kaylee was able to meet her Field Period goals: Developing a greater understanding of her values, skills, interests, and career aims.
It was an experience she said would not have happened without the support of Keuka College and its Judith Oliver Brown Scholarship, which helps fund international travel related to experiential learning.
“I had always wanted to go to Germany. I was talking to (Associate Professor of Psychology) Dr. Nick Koberstein when I was first accepted here and he said, ‘Oh, yeah, you can go to different places for your Field Period.’ Then I found out there was a scholarship for it. And I thought, ‘OK this might actually be possible.’ It was!”

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