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GTI Welcomes New Employee

The Global Training Initiative (GTI) has hired a new staff member. Adrienne Shank joins the team as new programs assistant to help with the SKEMA this year. Both programs will be in-person for the fall and spring semesters and will bring hundreds of international students to NC State from all across the world.

Meet Adrienne Shank

Head shot of Adrienne Shank.

Tell us about yourself. Where are you from? What’s your educational background etc.

Hi. My name is Adrienne Shank. I am originally from Pennsylvania and moved to Raleigh in 2016. I earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Education from Millersville University in 2009 and taught Spanish for several years. I also taught ESL abroad in Costa Rica. I realized pretty quickly from these experiences that I wanted to help others reach across cultural boundaries and language barriers to communicate and understand one another better, so I decided to continue my education by earning a Master of International Studies degree in 2020.

What are you most excited about in your new role as International Programs Assistant for GTI?

When the International Programs Assistant position opened with GTI, I knew this would be a great opportunity to work with students from around the world. I am most excited about facilitating cultural competence education and cross-cultural conversations between international students and NC State students.

What will you be responsible for?

I am primarily responsible for assisting with our SKEMA Business School partnership. As a GTI staff member, I am excited to help orient, connect, and integrate the SKEMA students into the NC State and surrounding community.

What made you choose this field of work as a career? Have you worked in higher education before and/or with international students?

I worked for several years in K-12 school systems as a language educator, so education and breaking down language and cultural barriers have always been very important to me. I knew that I wanted to branch out from teaching language to working more closely with students on having cross-cultural conversations and developing cultural competence. I had two great internships while completing my master’s degree which solidified my desire to work in higher education and in particular within the field of international education.

Tell us one thing we might be surprised to learn about you.

I am a vegetarian. But wait, the interesting part is that I have been vegetarian for my entire life. Aside from the occasional first bite of a restaurant order gone awry, I have never eaten meat.

What do you like to do outside of work?

I love to travel both within the U.S. and abroad. Traveling and encountering new experiences and cultures is what makes me feel alive and as though anything is possible. I also really enjoy spending time outdoors while walking my dog, playing tennis, hiking, or kayaking. For rainy days, reading is my favorite pastime.

Are you an early bird or a night owl?

I am definitely an early bird! My brain shuts down in the evening, but I can get up early and jump into work or other activities right away if needed.

If you could only have three apps on your smartphone, which would you pick?

One of the apps that I use the most is Libby, which is an e-book borrowing app connected to libraries across the country. I also use various apps (Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp) to stay in touch with family and friends across the country and across the world. Finally, I have several news apps on my phone so that I can keep up on current events. There are so many types of helpful apps that it’s difficult to narrow down!