China. Spain. Italy. South Africa. For a boy who arrived in the U.S. from Peru at the age of 8, Jeffrey Stiles ’16 made the most of Messiah’s education abroad opportunities while double majoring in Chinese and politics with a concentration in international relations. He also happens to have a minor in Spanish. “I was looking for a Christian college with a Chinese program,” explained Stiles. “Very few Christian colleges have that.” Not only did he study Chinese, he immersed himself in it, spending an entire academic year as a Boren scholar in China. In addition to taking language classes 36 hours per week, he also enjoyed confusing the locals. “I’d hear people say things about me, and then I’d answer them [in Chinese],” he said. “That was one of my favorite things, surprising people.” He also spent a semester in Spain, taking classes in economic policy at the University of Barcelona. Classes were taught in Spanish and Catalan, a mix of French and Spanish. He brushed up on his language skills by watching Spanish television with the elderly couple who provided his housing. From Spain, he was off to Italy for a 10-day tour with the Messiah College Concert Choir. “Singing in a 12th-century church is something you don’t get to do in America,” he said. In the summer of 2015, he interned with a parliament monitoring group in Cape Town, South Africa. Since there are no public records of committee meetings, his job was to record the meetings and then write summaries of them. “I was an arm’s-length away from Nelson Mandela’s grandson,” he said. After work, he checked off some bucket list items, including bungee jumping and cage-diving with great white sharks. While he was studying abroad, he also found time to campaign for—and win—the title of homecoming king. What’s next? He’s leaving soon for Samoa through the Peace Corps. “I don’t want to tie myself down to one thing,” he said.