Steger Center for International Scholarship
What's Virginia Tech doing in Switzerland?
The Steger Center for International Scholarship is the university’s European center and base for operations and support of its programs in the region. Located in Riva San Vitale, Switzerland, the Steger Center is home to several study abroad programs for students. The center also offers faculty and staff members opportunities to develop programs of their own.
Buongiorno! Welcome from the Steger Center for International Scholarship in Riva San Vitale, Switzerland. As I write this, I am sitting in the garden of the Villa Maderni, the completely renovated and expanded 18th century villa that is the home of the Steger Center. It is a magnificent summer afternoon, the sun is shining, and the palm trees and Hibiscus Syriascus (Rose of Sharon) are swaying in a warm, gentle breeze as I listen to the sounds of violins and cellos and violas emanating from the open windows of the villa as the students participating in the Lake Lugano Chamber Music Festival prepare for their first public performance later this afternoon.
I have had the great pleasure to be associated with the Steger Center for 8 years, starting as a professor in the Presidential Global Scholars program, and more recently in my role as Director of Academic Programs at the Center. In that time, I have observed the truly transformational and life-altering experiences that most students who spend the semester in Riva enjoy. Students become more aware of their own limitations and enormous potential, become more adventurous and willing to accept challenges, and become more culturally aware and considerate of those whose backgrounds, goals, language, likes and dislikes may be different from their own.
To those considering a semester abroad at the Steger Center, you are about to begin a remarkable journey and make new friends and have experiences that will stay with you for a lifetime. I look forward to meeting you and doing my part to assist in any way possible as you start along the path to become a more complete global citizen and international representative of Hokie Nation.
Ciao, Bob Bodnar