Joshua Stroup '08
I never thought I’d live and work in another country, let alone in the United Arab Emirates. As a senior underwriter for Zurich insurance company in Dubai, I can see how it all started with the opportunities I had at Susquehanna University.
Growing up in the small town of Richfield, Pa, I was surrounded by generations of people who had never ventured far from home. While I didn’t know exactly what I wanted to do for a living, I was sure I wanted to see more of the world.
My first taste of life abroad came as a student, when I traveled to China for four weeks with other university students and professors. The experience was so eye-opening that I returned one year later, this time for an entire summer through a business education program held in conjunction with Elizabethtown College.
When I started interviewing for jobs, almost everyone asked me about my China experience, because it suggested that I was a worldly person who takes interest in other nations and cultures. I often reflect on my China experiences and how they helped prepare me for the life I live now. I mean, before China, I had never even been on a plane!
Another trip, this time to London as part of the GO program, gave me a taste of what it feels like to live and work in a place very far from home. I know now that’s why I was comfortable enough to take a giant leap and come to Dubai.
I consider myself very fortunate, and it all started with the opportunities I had at Susquehanna. One of the greatest things about the university is that a student’s level of success really is up to the student and how much he or she takes advantage of the opportunities in front of them.
Looking back, it’s really clear to me that you can always undo or correct the path you take. But you don’t get a second chance to say “yes” to decisions you didn’t make in the past. Susquehanna laid the groundwork for making my decisions possible.
What Is Susquepedia?
Suhs-kwuh-pee-dee-uh (n): A collection of experiences, topics, and personalities that makes Susquehanna University unique.