(Robert Monroe and Mariana Zimmerman are reporting for Temple Update while participating in the Temple London Study Abroad program this semester. Robert Monroe reports on the dual role of one faculty member.)
Temple Students are entering their seventh week in London, but they didn’t travel across the pond alone. Advertising Professor Sheryl Kantrowitz is their faculty advisor and is experiencing London along with the students.
During this semester Professor Kantrowitz is living in Chelsea, just like the students, and also had to adjust to London living. “I wasn’t able to live in the faculty housing – they had run out of room, explains Kantrowitz, “ so I went on to a realty company and put in the post code and ended up in a flat that I can basically see the school from.” The location turned out to be a big help, she says. “Before the students arrived I actually had been running around London and I explored quite a few neighbourhoods in zones 1 and 2 already, so that was a big part of my adjustment , kind of getting my bearings.”
In addition to teaching a class about social media and personal branding, Professor Kantrowitz also organizes trips and outings for the 30-plus Temple students. She also serves as a mentor for their time in London. “It’s a different dynamic,” says Kantrowitz, “being here as an advisor and mentor. It’s more mentoring outside of academics in many ways. It’s kind of like I feel I am the students’ tie to home.”
“She has gone way past being a professor at this point,” says Communications Studies major Katie Leva. “She just made the whole experience personal, and she showed that she really cares about us and she wants to see us succeed as much as possible. She can relate to us on a really personal level being also in the communications field. I would definitely consider her a mentor.”
Professor Kantrowitz wants the semester to have a lasting impact on the students. “I hope that this will be a semester they won’t forget. I hope that they’ll want to travel more in their life and learn about different cultures, and hopefully get a lot out of learning about a different media environment, and that that will stay with them throughout their careers.”