KSU student raffles off a swing set to fund study abroad

Adam Ury is raffling off a playground installation in order to fund a study abroad trip to Florence, Italy during the Spring semester. Photo by Matt Hafley.


Adam Ury is raffling off a playground installation in order to fund a study abroad trip to Florence, Italy during the Spring semester. Photo by Matt Hafley.

Alicia Balog

Students from the College of Architecture and Environmental Design have the opportunity to study abroad in Florence. In order to pay for his Spring 2012 trip, one student has come up with an unusual fundraising idea.

Adam Ury, junior architecture major, is selling raffle tickets for a swing set to finance his trip. He said the opportunity to study in Italy may be one of the only chances he will have, and he needed to come up with an idea to earn his way.

“Well, everyone says that this trip especially is just the most amazing, wonderful experience,” Ury said. “I feel like doing this kind of study abroad and seeing other places really rounds you off as a person — kind of completes your growing up.”

Maurizio Sabini, associate professor of architecture and urban design and international studies coordinator for the architecture college, promotes the program and coordinates enrollment and course registration for the students traveling to Florence. He said this trip is extremely important for students to learn to relate to different cultures and expose themselves to different approaches to architecture and design.

“From a personal point of view, it’s an incredible, life-changing experience in terms of growing (into) a more mature person,” Sabini said. “We know the students and can easily see who they are before they go and who they are when they come back.”

According to the Office of Global Education, the Florence study abroad trip costs $13,991 for Ohio residents and $17,971 for Non-Ohio Residents. Ury wants to raise $17,000 to cover his trip and any other expenditures he makes in Italy.

However, other ways exist to pay for study abroad trips. Ediz Kaykayoglu, Education Abroad Manager from the Office of Global Education, said that for these trips, students should starting planning ahead in order to find scholarships. Kaykayoglu said different colleges in the university provide scholarships for their students, and students can find scholarships through the state, such as the Ohio International Consortium Scholarship.

“There is a deadline, but what you do is you apply for these with just an application page and a letter of intent — you know, why you want to apply for the scholarship and when you study abroad, in the end, what will happen,” Kaykayoglu said.

Ury’s summer employer gave him the idea to raffle off the swing set for his fundraiser.

“During the summers, I work with my dad. We generally build custom houses, but this summer, the housing market’s down,” Ury said. “So we were subcontracted to build swing sets, and the owner heard about my trip and offered to sell me one at a cost; and we figured the best way to capitalize on that is to raffle it off, and hopefully someone gets to win something and help me out. So it’s a win-win for everyone.”

If the raffle fails to meet his expectations, Ury said he has a few other ideas to raise money for the trip.

“We thought about a lot of things. We thought about maybe an improvised drive-in movie, a pig roast,” Ury said. “I’d kind of like to do a chili cook-off thing — something that really brings the community out and lets them have an experience, so they’re not just giving money to some punk college kid. They’re getting something for what they’re giving.”

Ury will continue to sell tickets at $10 a piece or 6 tickets for $50 for the rest of the month, with the drawing tentatively scheduled for October 1. Those who wish to purchase a ticket can contact Ury at his Kent email, [email protected], or call him at 330-704-7847.

Contact Alicia Balog at [email protected].