Melanie Woiwode Scholarship Recipient: Ellese Nguyen – Rock Climbing

Thanks to the Melanie Woiwode Scholarship, UC Berkeley Student Ellese Nguyen was able to participate in Mountaineering Club and rock climbing while studying abroad at the University of Sussex!

Read on to learn about her story:

My passion for rock climbing began over three years ago. I first rock climbed in March of 2016 and fell in love because it is a unique sport in so many ways – climbing combines problem-solving, flexibility, strength, and endurance. In addition to this, it encourages a very collaborative and social environment while also cultivating a sense of individual improvement and personal challenge.

Embarking on my study abroad at the University of Sussex, I knew that climbing would be an activity I could rely on to meet locals and make friends, and it did just that. Every time I went to the climbing gym, I was always approached by someone asking if I would like to work on a climbing problem together, and many people enjoyed hearing about climbing in California.

The relationships I have built through climbing were an integral part of my experience abroad. I went climbing an average of twice per week and the bus rides there, along with the time in the gym, gave me opportunities to interact with other British and International students.

I highly recommend the Melanie Woiwode Scholarship to anyone who wishes to continue their sport abroad. For me, the scholarship assisted and encouraged me to continue my sport abroad, and as a result, I was able to make friends and meet local climbers, making my transition to a new university, in a new country, much easier.

Ellese Nguyen