Meet the Staff

  • Lisa Swaim

    Lisa Swaim

    Director

    Lisa began her intercultural journey by visiting her friends’ homes in her multicultural neighborhood in Northern California, traveling as far and wide as she could with her earnings from her part-time jobs, and living with some amazing college roommates. Although she had studied Spanish, French, and Russian, it wasn’t until her Russian professor encouraged her to study abroad that Lisa had a longer immersive experience. She studied in Russia with UCEAP and then joined the Peace Corps to teach in Ukraine after graduation. Lisa majored in Russian Studies at UCLA and taught English in Ukraine, California, and Massachusetts. As she pursued her master’s degree in Intercultural Relations and assisted with orientation programs, she discovered what she really loves best are cross-cultural conversations and helping students with intercultural adjustment and understanding. She has worked as an international student and/or study abroad advisor in universities big and small, including Middlebury College, Georgetown University, The Ohio State University, and Kenyon College before returning to her home state to join Global Programming at UC Santa Cruz. In Lisa's free time, she enjoys long walks with her dog, taking her children on adventures, attending concerts, eating good food in good company, and working on her dissertation in International Higher Education.


     

  • Andy Ng

    Andy Ng

    Coordinator

    Andy (he/him) sees himself as a full-fledged California boy, carrying Bay Area slang wherever he travels around the world. He majored in Sociology and Asian American Studies (sparked by activism and his upbringing as Cantonese-American) at UCLA before moving to Sendai, Japan to teach English through the Japan Exchange and Teaching Programme (JET). Following this stint, he returned to LA to pursue his master’s degree in Postsecondary Administration and Student Affairs at USC. Andy then spent a number of years at the University of Illinois at Chicago where he served as a Resident Director, before making his way into the field of international education now at UCSC. In his free time, Andy enjoys cooking plant-based meals, traveling to see family and friends, and becoming the best Pokemon Go trainer he can be.


     

  • Victoria Hudak

    Victoria Hudak

    Coordinator

    Victoria is a self-proclaimed Navy Brat. She was born abroad in Japan, and grew up along the two coasts of the USA, and three years in Italy. Victoria majored in Spanish Language and Literature, and spent a semester studying at the Universidad Nacional de Córdoba, Argentina. Following graduation, she did a complete 180 and taught in English in Saitama, Japan via the JET Program for five years. At the end of her JET tenure, she pursued a Master’s in International Education Management from the Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey, CA. She came to UCSC after completing her practicum at UCSF. Victoria enjoys crafting and knitting in her spare time (though she prefers the term fiber arts)


     

  • Vanessa Orey

    Vanessa Orey

    International Student Engagement Advisor

    Vanessa joined the Global Programming team in 2022 as the International Student Engagement Advisor, serving as a bridge between International Student & Scholar Services and the Global Programming team. Her primary focus is on the support and success of F/J international students who are facing barriers related to enrollment, writing progress, academic integrity, and more. Vanessa also assists with targeted communication, scholarship outreach, exchange programs, orientation/follow-on sessions, and university-wide collaboration with relevant departments and units on campus. In addition to Vanessa's Bachelor's degree in International Relations from UC Davis and Master's in Counseling from San Jose State University, she also taught English in South Korea for one year, participated in a Spanish immersion program in Ecuador, backpacked in more than 20 countries worldwide, and previously worked at the Cabrillo College Transfer & Career Center. In Vanessa's free time, she enjoys being outdoors, dancing, hiking, sailing, and loves to call Santa Cruz home with an international twist!

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