Indiana University student Kelly Kreutz, 20, will pack her bags in August for a year-long trip at Universidad Compultense de Madrid, one of the oldest and most prestigious universities in Spain.
An International Relations and Spanish major at the Bloomington campus, she will conduct research for her senior thesis that will focus on the Roma Gypsy ethnic identity in Spain.
“During my time abroad I will be taking classes to fulfill both my Spanish and International Relations majors. I also plan to do a lot of traveling and, of course, eat a lot of good food,” Kreutz said.
The daughter of Bret and Lisa Kreutz, of Lowell, Kelly was named an Indiana University Founders Scholar and plans to pursue additional education upon graduating in 2015.
“I am considering both political science and Portuguese for my graduate studies. Obtaining a Ph.D. is an ambition of mine as well,” she said.
“Ideally, I would like to work in foreign policy for an organization such as the U.S. State Department or the United Nations. I would also love to enter academia and become a professor.”
Kreutz was recently invited to attend a foreign policy seminar with former U.S. Senator Richard Lugar, the first official event for Lugar as a professor of practice in IU’s new School of Global and International Studies.
“Meeting Senator Lugar was a great honor. I admire him for his dedication to the state of Indiana and most especially admire his bipartisanship. I was completely shocked that I was given the chance to meet him personally,” she said.
“I was able to gain a better understanding of foreign issues that our government is currently dealing with. The seminar gave me new insight and a deeper understanding of many issues, especially the conflict in Syria,” she added.
Kreutz serves as a board member of the IU Union Board Spirit and Traditions committee, planning numerous school events throughout the year. She is also employed as an athletic tutor, aiding student- athletes with Spanish class requirements.
In addition, she is a member of Books and Beyond, a service-learning project dedicated to ending the book famine in Rwanda.