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Easier than you think to study abroad

UA+student+Amanda+O%27+Reiley+visits+a+castle+in+Spain+during+the+DISSTA+study+abroad+program+in+Valladolid+this+summer.
UA student Amanda O' Reiley visits a castle in Spain during the DISSTA study abroad program in Valladolid this summer.

UA student Amanda O' Reiley visits a castle in Spain during the DISSTA study abroad program in Valladolid this summer.

Kristina Aiad-Toss

Kristina Aiad-Toss

UA student Amanda O' Reiley visits a castle in Spain during the DISSTA study abroad program in Valladolid this summer.

By Logan Lane, Managing Editor

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Studying abroad isn’t too expensive; it won’t push back your graduation date; and you don’t need to know a foreign language. These are some of the rumors that The University of Akron’s second annual Study Abroad Fair hopes to expel this Thursday, Oct. 27.

The fair, which will be open between 4:30 p.m. and 6:30 p.m. in the Student Union Ballroom, will be staffed entirely by UA students who have already studied abroad. They will be able to help interested students decide which program works for them.

Four different kinds of programs are available to students, according to Assistant Director of Study Abroad David Black:

  • Faculty or Student Led programs usually involve a faculty member or trained student who accompanies the students abroad. These trips are typically safer, but tend to occur in the summer. An example is the Sant’Anna Institute Summer Program in Sant’Anna, Italy.

 

  • Exchange Programs are with schools who have partnered with UA to exchange students. These are the only programs that allow students to use a portion of their UA scholarships to pay for tuition. Programs generally take place in the fall or spring semester.
  • 3rd Party Affiliates are outside companies that fill in the gaps left by the limited exchange programs. Students can usually apply for scholarships ranging from $200 to $1,000 depending on the company.
  • Direct Enroll Schools is a relatively new program that allows students to directly enroll at foreign universities. There are none of the usual agreements that need to be signed. It’s up to the school to support the student, so it is important to select the right option.

 

Jennifer Dixon, a graduate assistant for the Study Abroad Society, encourages students to be flexible when it comes to choosing a program. Students who are willing to “step off the beaten path” often end up discovering exceptional programs. Dixon, who says most programs end up costing a little more than a typical semester at UA, was actually paid to study abroad at an exchange program in South Korea.

But you can’t really put a price tag on the experience, Dixon admits. Her study abroad experience has allowed her to visit 12 countries in six different continents, meet friends from all over the world, and expand her worldview. It’s even opened up career opportunities.

“The benefits from studying abroad are endless,” Dixon says. “Students who study abroad tend to see improvements in everything from their performance in school, to their career prospects, to their personal lives…If students are looking to gain a little more independence, or looking for a way to make their resume stand out, study[ing] abroad is an almost foolproof method.”

For more information on the Study Abroad Fair and the types of program available, visit: uakron.edu/study-abroad/

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1 Comment

One Response to “Easier than you think to study abroad”

  1. Alex C on October 25th, 2016 4:36 AM

    I like the message advocated by this article. I think it is really important to dispel these rumours surrounding studying abroad, especially as many tend to look upon it as a dawnting experience, which you could easily shy away from. This is simply not the case.

    When I studied abroad myself I was overwhelmed by the prospect of going to a foreign country, which of course can be scary as everything is so different to what you are used to back at home. Upon arrival, however, I realised that this was genuinely nothing to be scared about, I was with a great community of other study abroad students who were always very supportive and friendly. The language barrier was not an issue either as all the locals were friendly and accommodating.

    I did a course with this organisation, in Seville, called Centro Mundolengua, they genuinely did their best to integrate us through an extensive orientation program as well as organising host family accommodation. This was a personal highlight, I am still in contact with my host mother, they were genuinely lovely.

    I genuinely had a great time with Mundolengua, and cannot recommend them enough. Here is a link to their website, you should at least check out their great variety of courses!
    https://www.centromundolengua.com/programs/

    I genuinely wish everyone who wants to study abroad the very best of luck, it is an incredible experience!

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