Meet Luke Hoeferkamp, graduating Study Abroad Peer Advisor
This May, Arizona Global celebrates and recognizes the contributions of our many graduating student workers. We’re introducing them here over the next few weeks. We appreciate the level of professionalism and Wildcat work ethic these students bring to their respective roles in the business unit. We are proud to call them coworkers and teammates, and we wish them all the greatest success as they take their knowledge and skills out into the world.
Meet Luke Hoeferkamp, Class of '22. Luke, who has worked for the past year as a Peer Advisor on the UA Study Abroad team, graduates this month with a degree in Psychology from the College of Science, as well as a minor in Spanish.
Hometown: St. Louis, Missouri
Degrees: B.A. Psychology, Minor in Spanish, College of Science
Study Abroad: UA Seoul, South Korea, Fall 2020
We spoke with Luke to learn more about his experience as a student at the University of Arizona.
UA: Why did you chose to come to the University of Arizona?
Luke: I really wanted to move to a new part of the country, someplace different. I had been to the Southwest before and really liked the climate and the people. I was also fortunate to receive some student aid, which was very helpful. And when I visited Tucson, I liked the look and feel of the Arizona campus.
UA: What are your plans after graduation?
Luke: This summer, I will be backpacking throughout Europe. In the fall, I plan to start working. I just finished the Peace Corps Prep Program and will be applying this summer. I’m also considering teaching English abroad and I am getting my TEFL (Teaching English as a Foreign Language) certificate from the CESL program here at the University of Arizona.
UA: What do you want to accomplish in your career?
Luke: Eventually, I hope that my education and experiences will lead to a career with the Department of State. I would like to work as a Foreign Service Officer in an embassy in another country.
UA: How has the University of Arizona helped prepare you for your career goals?
Luke: I do feel the University of Arizona has prepared me for my career goals. From academics and faculty to career advising, I have felt supported in my decisions and have always been able to find the resources and advice I need.
UA: What do you love about your major?
Luke: I’ve always been interested in human behavior and mental processes. I knew in my sophomore year in high school that I wanted to study psychology and learn more about how humans work and why we do the things we do. That’s always been fascinating to me.
UA: Do you have a favorite classes that you recommend?
Luke: I really liked taking the upper level Psychology courses, like Abnormal Psychology and Social Psychology. And I really enjoyed my classes with Professor Lazarewicz, who was very supportive of his students. Even if you’re not going into a career in the field of psychology, or becoming a therapist, there’s so much you can learn about yourself, about mental health in general, that is good to know just to be able to talk to and support the people in your life. It’s good for everyone to know.
UA: What activities have you been involved in during your four years?
Luke: In addition to participating in the Peace Corps Prep Program for the past three years, I’m in Theta Xi fraternity, and have been involved in our main philanthropic project, Habitat for Humanity. I’m currently in Psi Chi, the International Honor Society in Psychology, and was involved in that since I joined as a sophomore. We have regular meetings, host speakers, and do philanthropic work in the community.
UA: What student work or other positions have you had during your four years here?
Luke: For the past year, I’ve worked as a Study Abroad Peer Advisor. We help students who are exploring study abroad programs through the process of searching, selecting, applying, and preparing for their experience. I really enjoy sharing my own experience with other students.
UA: Tell us about your Study Abroad experience.
Luke: Studying Abroad was something I always knew I wanted to do, since high school. My sister studied abroad and had such a good experience. The way my academic schedule worked out, I was only able to study abroad in Fall 2020, during COVID, so my options were limited, and the process was a bit more challenging to navigate than normal. I ended up going to Seoul, South Korea, which was so different from any place I’d been before. And that was great because the country was so foreign to me, it really challenged me to get out of my comfort zone, to broaden my perspective and really expand my intercultural competence. I really liked being challenged in so many ways through that experience.
There were students from many countries in the program, and I lived with several from Europe. Our landlord had a friend who was a Korean teacher, and we got a two-week introductory course from her to learn the basics of the Korean language that helped us get around.
We did a lot of traveling around the country on weekends and got to see most of the other large cities outside of Seoul, and a lot of the countryside and rural life. One of my favorite side trips was to Jeju Island, they call it the “Hawaii of South Korea.” It’s beautiful there. We also went to the mountains one weekend to go skiing. It was great to be able to see so much of the country, in spite of the pandemic.
UA: Are there any significant memories you will have of your college experience?
Luke: One of my most memorable experiences was studying abroad in Seoul. While on campus, I have fond memories of hanging out with friends on University and hiking at Mt. Lemmon and other parks around Tucson.
UA: Where have you lived during your time as a student here?
Luke: I started out living in a dorm, which I really recommend to freshmen to get focused academically and to make social connections. My second year I was in the Honors College housing, and since then I have lived off campus.
UA: Do you have a favorite place to eat on or near campus?
Luke: I really like Cheba Hut, just off campus on 6th and Campbell. They have the best sandwiches around.
UA: Do you have a favorite place to study?
Luke: I used to love setting up my hammock near the turtle pond. It’s quiet and shady, and a perfect place to study, read, play guitar, and hang out. Really any shady spots on the mall are great for that.
UA: What are some of your favorite things about Tucson?
Luke: As with many students who come from out of state, the fact that we can be outside with beautiful, moderate weather from August to May is great. I like hiking and camping, so I love to be able to do that year-round.
UA: What advice do you have for incoming freshmen?
Luke: Advice to incoming students would be to get involved early on. Join clubs, Greek Life, give things a try. And if you don’t like it, try something else! But definitely, challenge yourself to try new things and get involved!