Study abroad fair seeks to educate

Denise Wright

Sophomore Political Science major, Adrianna Midamba stops to speak with Paige Clark, left, at the Study Abroad Fair, held yesterday in the Student Center. Clark works with Academic Programs International and provided students with information covering Eu

Credit: DKS Editors

Students considered the possibilities of spending a semester at sea and studying music in Italy, all while on the second floor of the Student Center.

Information about various study abroad opportunities was presented yesterday at the third annual study abroad fair, hosted by the Office of International Affairs.

Upon signing in at the registration table, students were given a mock passport and told to stop at a minimum of eight tables to get information and have their passports stamped. If they returned a full passport, students would be entered in prize drawings for iPods, USB Flash Drives and more.

After being informed of this, students proceeded to make their rounds to the 33 tables that were set up. The tables’ hosts ranged from banks and financial aid to representatives from Kent State and national study abroad organizations.

Kimberly Martin, freshman international relations major, said her interest in studying abroad increased after attending the fair.

“I know more of what’s out there,” she said. “The (representatives) are very informative.”

Judith Carroll, study abroad program manager, said the event was set up to be convenient for students.

“It’s great because all that information is concentrated in one place at one time.”

While students had the opportunity to gather a great deal of information, they also had several options to choose from as far as travel destination was concerned. Both American and international programs were represented at the fair, which gave students more to think about.

Sandy Baker, administrative assistant in the Office of International Affairs, said she thinks students sometimes overlook the possibility of studying in the United States or other English-speaking countries.

“This option makes a foreign immersion experience accessible to students without the language barrier,” she said. “We like to think of (study abroad) as study away because it can be national or international.”

No matter where students decide to travel, Baker said she thinks any student can benefit from studying abroad.

“There probably isn’t any career a student could end up in that doesn’t have international involvement,” Baker said. “An international experience makes a student more marketable in their career arena.”

Contact honors and international affairs reporter Denise Wright at [email protected].

Financial aid tips to consider when studying abroad

1. Contact the Financial Aid Office first – and early.

2. If students are not receiving enough aid already, they can work with the Financial Aid Office to look into other options. These options usually include parent loans and private bank loans.

3. If students are planning to study abroad in the summer, they should consider expenses they will have throughout the normal academic year and budget accordingly.

Source: Yvonna Washington-Greer, assistant director of student financial aid