Studying abroad puts college in perspective

Changing of the Guard at Buckingham Palace—Anna Drysdale Conor Barry
(Anna Drysdale) Changing of the Guard at Buckingham Palace, London.

(Anna Drysdale) Changing of the Guard at Buckingham Palace, London.

While in college, your classroom can be a country.

The U’s Center for Learning Abroad offers study abroad trips to more than 60 different countries worldwide.

There are different program types, such as exchange programs, ISEP and faculty-directed programs. Exchange programs are typically taught in the language of the host country, while ISEP programs are commonly taught in English. Faculty-directed programs are taught by U professors, and, as a result, students do not have to transfer credit as they would from an exchange or ISEP program.

Brittney Todd, a learning abroad coordinator, said a significantly greater number of students participate in learning abroad programs during the summer than the regular school year. On average, one in four students who apply for a learning abroad trip receives a scholarship.

All students accepted into a learning abroad program must complete an online orientation. The orientation addresses common issues of global travel, such as culture shock, student conduct and preparation.

The U offers a large selection of subjects and locations to study abroad.

Peter Davidson, a sophomore in business, is going to Cambridge in July for interdisciplinary studies. He looks forward to absorbing British culture.

“Study abroad gives you such a unique variety of perspectives,” Davidson said.

He chose to study in England because his family is traveling there, and his mother enjoyed studying abroad when she attended the U.

Alex Vermillion, a senior in English, is participating in a theatre program in London and will be there until mid-June. She said studying abroad is the “best decision” she has made.

“You really get close to your peers because you live with them, and your professors become your best friends,”

Vermillion said. “Going on trips like this makes you really enjoy what is happening now. You can relax, enjoy the place you’re in, build new relationships and learn a lot about yourself because you have the time and opportunity to just sit back and enjoy.”

Vermillion saved her money to make her trip affordable.

The Learning Abroad Office not only starts students on international journeys but also connects them when they return. Students generate blogs and pictures that they share with the U community once home.