Study abroad a life changing experience

The Study Abroad Fair informed students about the options available to them to go to different countries, experience different cultures and learn different languages Thursday.

The fair allowed students to explore the opportunities they have to enhance their cross-cultural communication skills and deepen their understanding of global issues over 20 countries like Austria, Denmark and Japan.

Freshman biology pre medicine major Delaney Ellis, one of the students at the fair, said she is looking to go to Ecuador in the summer of 2017. She said this study abroad opportunity seemed to relate the most to her major, in addition to practicing her Spanish.

“It’s a whole different thing, you can’t get here what you can get somewhere over there,” Ellis said. “Being able to immerse in other culture, I can definitely stay away from home, especially if I was doing something I am so passionate about.”

Studying abroad may be hard at times when students need to adapt to a new place with different cultures, however, Marshall University does offer faculty-led programs like Kentucky Institute for International Studies (KIIS) for students who wants to go with familiar faces and for a shorter period of time.

Program director of the Chile program, Shawn Schulenberg, designs and organizes the Chile program, from deciding where the students will be staying to what excursions they will be doing, in addition to recruiting students.

“For students who are afraid of leaving for too long, by the time they get over their homesickness they’ll be sent home,” Schulenberg said.

Senior print journalism major Caitlin Fowlkes studied abroad with Marshall in Cambridge, England at Anglia Ruskin University for three months. She said it was a lot to do in terms of figuring out the process of going to another country, but it was a life changing experience.

“The experience of being able to live in a different culture showed me a different perspective on things,” Fowlkes said. “When I get out of school, I want to travel internationally, so it was really cool to get to see so many different European cultures.”

Students who want to study abroad are required to have a minimum of 2.5 cumulative GPA and to have completed their freshman year.

Students can also choose to take courses in their major or fill up their elective hours in the span of their study abroad experience, while scholarships and funding are also available for students to apply.

Kessyl Lim can be contacted at [email protected].