University of Connecticut students must submit applications for Winter 2018 and Spring 2019 study abroad programs by Oct. 1.
Students of all majors can choose to study abroad in over 65 countries worldwide, according to the UConn study abroad website. Education abroad advisor Valerie Nightingale suggests students consider their goals and major requirements when choosing a program.
“(Students should ask themselves,) ‘What are my goals? What do I need to fulfill for my program of study? When do I want to graduate? And how can education abroad fit into that overall plan?’” Nightingale said.
These questions, along with service-learning and extracurricular opportunities that can be pursued while abroad, are all factors that play into the application process, according to Nightingale.
UConn’s education abroad center offers a number of advising workshops and seminars, Nightingale said.
“We hold workshops to show students how to complete the application and how to format the documents that go with specific applications,” Nightingale said.
The application process is different based on the kind of program a student chooses.
“If applying to an exchange program, there are additional requirements and that process is going to be longer,” Nightingale said.
Education abroad programs with a duration longer than ninety days will require a visa, the education abroad website said.
UConn has three different types of education abroad programs, Nightingale said. Each charges different kinds of fees, but all offer financial aid assistance.
“For a program that charges UConn tuition, you can use almost all... (types) of financial aid package,” Nightingale said.
The other two types of programs, both of which involve third parties, accept most forms of federal financial aid. This includes all Title IV funds but excludes grants and scholarships given by UConn.
Education abroad advisors work to help students find scholarships that lower the cost of education abroad programs, Nightingale said.
“There’s a variety of scholarships available… some are administered through any active FAFSA, others through the global affairs foundation, there are other listed on our website and then we have some that are national scholarships,” said Nightingale.
Some of UConn’s most popular programs include UConn in London and UConn in Florence, while UConn in Perugia and third-party Barcelona programs have been rising in popularity, Nightingale said. Additionally, more and more students on the pre-health and pre-med track are taking advantage of the , UConn in Grenada program.
“Students with intermediate/advanced proficiency in Spanish... get to do some shadowing in a regular hospital setting,” Nightingale said.
Addison Kimber, a fifth-semester political science and biology double major who studied abroad in London last summer, said the experience helped her become more independent.
“I gained a better sense of independence from living on my own and managing the expectations of living in a foreign country,” Kimber said.
Studying abroad helps students expand their world view by coming into contact with other cultures, Nightingale said.
“Students realize how much they get out of connecting with people from other cultures and have the desire to create that in their own life,” Nightingale said. “(Studying abroad) allow(s) them to continue exploring diversity and to work interculturally.”
Natalie Suleiman is a campus correspondent for The Daily Campus. She can be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.