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Global Education Office Staff

The Global Education Office at SUNY Plattsburgh is home to International Admissions, International Student Services and Study Abroad and Exchanges.

Staff Directory


Sarah Erno, Graduate Assistant

Phone: 518-564-3287
Email: [email protected]

As the graduate assistant in study away, my job is to provide students with a helping hand in preparing for choosing a study away program that fits their needs. I assist students in the application process and prepare students with pre-departure information so that they are ready to take off for their new adventure.

Academic credentials: B.A. in psychology, SUNY Potsdam and a M.S. in student affairs and higher education, SUNY Plattsburgh (continuing)

Personal biography: I grew up in a small town, Mechanicville N.Y., where I learned a lot about my love for working with people and providing a helping hand. I absolutely love autumn and the fall season, as it reminds me of home, soccer and football! I have gone to Lake Placid every year for vacation, so the Adirondacks are very nostalgic for me. My family and two dogs are my everything and I enjoy almost everything the world has to offer. I am also a foodie.

Places I have visited: I have been to Canada for soccer games, but did not have an opportunity to explore as much as I wanted to. I’ve recently embarked outside of the country this past summer (August 2022) to Bermuda and it was so much fun. I would like to travel to Ireland one day, along with England, Australia and Japan.

Favorite SUNY Plattsburgh activity: I really enjoy taking walks around the campus with my pups. I am excited to see the leaves change and feel the cool weather again. Plattsburgh and the surrounding areas are great places to enjoy the snow, which I also love — whether it is snowboarding or playing outside with my dogs, it is always a great part about being in the North Country.

Best advice for prospective study abroad students: “Embrace the unknown” – Jacqueline Vogl. There is so much world to see, so go outside of your bubble and jump into adventure! Life is so much fun and college is all about experiences — make moments you will be proud to share. The study away team is always happy to answer questions and provide support as well, so please don’t hesitate to reach out! As a wise and dear friend once said to me, “let’s go exploring.”

Ms. Kate Friedrich, Interim ISS Coordinator

Phone: 518-564-3291
Email: [email protected]

Kate is the interim International Students Services Coordinator.  In her normal role, she serves as teh International Admisions Advisor.  She has a wealth of experience to help you keep in good status with immigration an d navigate teh university.  

Academic credentials: M.S. college and agency counseling, SUNY Plattsburgh; M.Ed. English education, University of Minnesota-Twin Cities (Minneapolis, Minn.); B.A. English, University of Minnesota-Twin Cities (Minneapolis, Minn.).

Brief biography: I grew up in the Land of 10,000 Lakes, Minnesota. During college, I studied abroad in Northern Ireland. In Northern Ireland, I learned how to study and live in another culture. I hope that my experience helps me to better understand and assist international students at SUNY Plattsburgh. I came to SUNY Plattsburgh to attend graduate school. I love my beautiful new home which also has many lakes.

Places I have visited: I have gotten to visit many places in Asia and Europe through personal and professional travel. Some of my favorite places have been Trinidad & Tobago, Malaysia, Cambodia, Japan, Greece and Turkey. I want to visit Ethiopia, India, Senegal, Chile, and a 1,000 other places.

Favorite SUNY Plattsburgh Activity: SUNY Plattsburgh and the city of Plattsburgh have great places to eat and enjoy time with others. One of my favorite activities is to visit restaurants with a group of good friends.

Favorite experience as a GEO staff member: I love orientation at GEO! It is an exciting time to meet new students and help them transition to a new culture. I love assisting students with taking their first steps to success at SUNY Plattsburgh.

Best advice for prospective international students: College is what you make of it. This means that you determine what kind of experience you have here. I hope that your experience at college is amazing!

Ms. Beckie Greenhaw, Office Manager

Phone: 518-564-3287
Email: [email protected]

Beckie has been with study abroad and exchanges since August 2005. She holds an associate degree in business administration from Clinton Community College and is currently working toward her bachelor’s degree at SUNY Plattsburgh.

Beckie has visited many places and enjoys being part of helping students on their journey to study abroad. Personally, Beckie enjoys being a mom, photography, swimming, and traveling.

Mr. Andy Lang, Director

Phone: 518-564-3287
Email: [email protected]

As director, I lead the three GEO teams: International recruitment and admissions, international student services and study away. And, I also provide leadership to the entire campus community on international engagement and programming.

What I enjoy most about global education is watching young people accept the challenge to go abroad or to another state to new everything, not knowing how they will react, but knowing they will have to adapt.  It can be scary, sometimes embarrassing. Most of the time, it is just a fun adventure though with ups and downs. No matter how “international” you are or are not, it will challenge you. And, that is how you grow, learn who you are and figure out what you want to do (or not, which is just as important) in life!  

Academic credentials: B.A. French English translation, McGill University (Montreal, Quebec, Canada); M.A. French University of Cincinnati (Ohio, USA)

Brief biography:  I grew up on a dairy farm in Appalachian Ohio. I also had the opportunity to attend high school in France, which is where the international education bug bit me a long time ago. When I returned, I started college at McGill University in Montreal and eventually completed a master’s degree back home in Ohio. Since then, I have worked in international education full time at universities in the U.S. and Canada. And, this is my second position at SUNY Plattsburgh. I was here form 2005–2008 as manager of study abroad and exchanges. Plattsburgh is a wonderful place to live, work and pursue an education! 

Places I have visited: I have traveled to about 40 countries around the globe. Antarctica and the moon are on the bucket list! 

Favorite SUNY Plattsburgh activity: I love everything about the fall and fall activities on campus and in the area. Each new school year also represents a fresh start, new people and new 

Favorite experience as a GEO staff member: My favorite experience is meeting students from all over New York, the U.S. and the world and learning about from where they come! My second best experience is hearing from these students after they have graduated. I love to hear about how you are doing, what you are doing and where else you have been!  

Best advice for students: Try, participate, engage, repeat!  Try as many new opportunities as you can. Commit to finishing what you start. And, always treat others how you want to be treated, especially when it is difficult to do so.

Ms. Brooke Layhee, Coordinator of Study Away

Phone: 518-564-3287
Email: [email protected]

As the senior coordinator of study away, I oversee program administration, planning, budgeting, marketing and recruitment and advise on all study away programming. My goal is to get you out into the world! With over 700 programs in SUNY, there really is something for everyone! Our office will also assist with your preparations before you leave via our extensive pre-departure orientation and will assist with your credit transfer upon return.

Academic credentials: M.S. in student affairs and higher education and a B.A in mathematics, both from SUNY Plattsburgh.

Personal biography: I’m a Plattsburgh native, growing up not too far outside of the city. I absolutely love where I’m from and having grown up in the Adirondacks is what inspired me to want to see more. My family is what drove my desire for travel and we took advantage wherever possible. I knew in high school that I wanted to study abroad during college — so that is what I did! It led me to my passion for international education, where I can work with college students looking for a life changing experience. After graduating from SUNY Plattsburgh, I found my graduate program here at Plattsburgh, which ultimately led to my career here in the GEO office! 

Places I have visited: When studying in England, I traveled throughout Europe as much as possible, including Scotland, Ireland, Portugal, Spain, Germany, and I spent over two weeks in Italy, with some time in a little Italian villages with friends over the holidays. I’ve also traveled quite a bit within the U.S with my family, including Hawaii, cities in Canada, and other countries like Mexico, the Bahamas, Bermuda, and the Dominican Republic. I hope to expand my travels further west in the U.S and across Europe into Asia as soon as I can — or anywhere I can get myself to! 

Favorite SUNY Plattsburgh activity: Of course studying abroad was my absolute favorite activity! I truly believe this activity solidified my future career path and life goals. While here though, I really enjoy the many different events taking place across campus. I suggest stepping out of your comfort zone and going to a club’s event you may not normally attend, or looking for different ways to get involved to enrich your experience as much as possible. 

Favorite experience as GEO staff member: I love watching the transformation in students, from being apprehensive about the journey they are about to embark on, to the pure confidence they have when they return. They’ve often caught the travel bug too and they’re excitedly awaiting their next adventure. I get to see that passion grow and develop within them, which is extremely rewarding. 

Best advice for prospective study abroad students: As one of my favorite professors from graduate school said, “tolerate the distress”, and I’ve found this applies to a lot in life. We are here to support you through something that is very much “the unknown”. Embrace it! Take the leap! You’ll certainly be glad that you did.

Ms. Cathy Rafferty, Office Assistant

Phone: 518-564-3287
Email: [email protected]

Cathy serves all three areas of GEO as our office assistant, and she is likely to be one of the first friendly faces you meet when you come to our office. She joined GEO in 2022 after working on campus in the Mail Room starting in 2016. Cathy grew up locally in Redford, N.Y. A fun fact about her is that she has a twin sister who looks just like her!

Cathy has spent time traveling in the U.S., including as far away as Montana. She dreams of traveling to see Europe. One of her favorite things to do in her free time is to spend it with her darling two-year old granddaughter

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