Junior Major Moments: Studying Abroad and More with International Studies Major Alexander Rossen

Exterior shot of the Townhouses, where Alex lives on campus

Today, we speak to Alex Rossen, an International Studies major with Jewish Studies and Sociology minors from Westfield, NJ (Union County). Now a senior, Alex is also an on-campus resident who lives in the Townhouses. He tells us more about his junior year and his favorite Rowan moments.

Alex in Prague in the RCHGS Study Abroad program in 2019.
Alex visited Prague in 2019 through the Rowan Center for the Study of Holocaust, Genocide, and Human Rights’ Study Abroad program.

Could you share your favorite moment with a faculty member or a favorite experience in one of your classes?

My favorite memory with a faculty member would have to be with Professor Manning. I first met him my freshman year when I started as an intern working for him, and he’s been a huge mentor for me ever since.

In summer 2019, Dr. Manning led the Rowan Study Abroad trip on Holocaust Memory, which I was on. One day, Dr. Manning was chatting with me and a couple of other students on the trip, and he jokingly said, “Just so you all know, Alex is my favorite student.”

Alex sitting with friends on Rowan's big yellow chair on the Bunce green.
Alex sitting with friends on the #RowanProud chair on Bunce Green.

What is the most amazing or interesting ​thing you’ve learned in your major this year?

I guess I would have to say the most amazing thing I’ve learned this year was meeting [Canadian military officer] General Romeo Dallaire when he came to give the annual CHSS Lecture. I was volunteering to help set up the event and got the chance to meet him before his speech. I really admired his work as a peacekeeping leader in Rwanda and as an advocate for human rights.

When I asked him how he handled all the indifference, ignorance and extremism he’d seen throughout his career, his answer was pretty simple, but also very powerful. He just said, “Don’t blink, stand your ground, young man.”

What pre-professional experiences are helping to support your growth?

I think my time interning for the Rowan Center for the Study of Holocaust, Genocide and Human Rights (RCHGHR) was one of the greatest experiences in pre-professional growth I’ve been lucky to have. I applied and got accepted into this internship through the CHSSMatch program. In addition to that internship, I serve as treasurer for the RCHGHR Student Association and am now also starting out as Secretary for the College Democrats at Rowan and Multimedia Editor for The Whit.

All these experiences have helped me work toward personal and professional goals that I feel passionate about in areas like photography and human rights awareness. They’ve also helped me develop as a leader and build valuable professional skills.

Like what you see?

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Story by:
Bianca Torres, senior music industry major

Photos courtesy of:
Alex Rossen

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