Study abroad tips and options to travel the world

Anna Hoffman

It might come as a surprise but studying at Kent State University doesn’t always mean actually being at Kent State University in Kent, Ohio. Kent State offers study abroad programs that go all over the world and vary in length of time, price, courses offered, languages spoken, and more.

Kent State has its own campus in Florence, Italy, with Kent State professors, other KSU students and courses that you register for on Flashline just like you would here in Ohio. If Italy isn’t for you, Kent also has a series of exchange programs where students from other universities are sent to Kent and we send Kent State students to them. Tuition is equal to KSU tuition, but room and board will be paid to the partnering university. Finally, if you’re still looking for something (or somewhere) else for your study abroad experience, there are also dozens of programs through the International Student Exchange Program (ISEP).

Though for this first week (or maybe the entire semester) of classes your main goal might be trying to find where (or what) the M.A.C. Annex is for your basic yoga class, take a look below to see where in the world you might venture to outside of Ohio and get some tips from Education Abroad Adviser Amber Bollinger on how to start researching some of the opportunities available.

1. Make it major-specific

Though the appealing part of “study abroad” might start with the “abroad” part, finding an experience that fits well with your career and educational interests should be all the more rewarding. If you think studying a second language could be beneficial for your future career, try picking a location based on potential language immersion.

“For people who are scared of language most of our programs don’t require a language,” said Amber Bollinger, education abroad adviser. “And we have a range of programs, so no matter what your major is we can sit down and try to figure out what’s best for your major.”

2. Start saving yesterday, and look for scholarships

If you think you might want to study abroad, the first things you will want to look at are the financial options for different programs. Many programs have tuition costs that are equal to Kent State tuition, and oftentimes financial aid used on campus here can be put toward study abroad opportunities. Financial aid includes scholarships, so specifically for studying abroad.

3. Talk to an advisor

You will want to speak with both your academic advisor and Office of Global Education advisor. Some majors even have study abroad built in to their degree requirements, and others have ways to incorporate it while still keeping you on track to graduation. The best way to figure out your options is to meet with your advisors and discuss the options best for you academically and financially. 

“The best thing to tell students is to not be scared of coming to meet with us,” Bollinger said. “A lot of times we find that students think that meeting with an abroad advisor commits them to study abroad, which is terrifying, because there are so many factors. Dont be scared, we just want you to know exactly what your options are so you can make a well-rounded decision.”

4. Keep your mind open

Maybe you are planning on walking into the Office of Global Education with an exact plan of where you want to go and how long you want to be there, or maybe you aren’t even totally sure if study abroad is something you want to do. No matter what boat you’re in, when you start looking at study abroad you should keep an open mind. With hundreds of programs to choose from, there might be an option perfect for you that you don’t even know exists. 

“Always keep your mind open to it, because you never know what you might find or who you might meet while you’re abroad or what you might learn.”

Anna Hoffman is a photographer and reporter for the Summer Kent Stater. Contact her at [email protected]