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Study Abroad Opportunities Give New Perspective

USD’s study abroad program states that with studying abroad students will widen their world perspectives and help distinguish them from other students, according to the USD website. 

Jessica Winterringer, the study abroad advisor, highly encourages students to take advantage of this opportunity while they have the chance, especially those who are wanting to grow their personal skills.

USD offers many opportunities in order to fit the needs of each student. Winterringer said they offer individualized studying abroad programs as well as faculty-led programs. It is not just coursework opportunities, students can learn abroad for internships, research, service, a practicum or a combination of these.

When talking to Winterringer on how to solidify the options, she said there are both opportunities related to a specific major but also programs provided to students with any major. If a student is not confident in which program would best fit them and their studies, an advisor can help make the best decision for the student. 

“You’re never going to know unless you try, and this is the time to travel. They are really eye-opening experiences, and many students return saying it changed their lives for the better,” Winterringer said. 

Winterringer says the staff at USD shows their support to the students when they are going through the program and when returning. Winterringer says she will do monthly check-ins with the students via WhatsApp, Zoom or Skype. She is always there for the students in any way she can be.

Winterringer said these experiences help students learn soft skills like networking and communication, and many students return home feeling more confident. Amber Block is a sophomore participating in the National Student Exchange at the University of Hawai’i Manoa this semester.

“It is such an experience of independence and learning to expand not only your physical and cultural horizons but also within yourself pushing your limits and perspectives,” Block said.

Block recommends studying away to all students in whatever capacity fits them best. 

“I had always wanted to do some kind of study away experience so I was eager to look into the options it provided me. My experience with National Student Exchange has been wonderful,” Block said. 

Some of the programs coming up include Guatemala, Kenya, Canada, Germany and France,  Greece and Georgia. The study abroad team is not sure whether these will be offered during Spring Break or in the summer, but the information will be posted once it is confirmed. 

Students in the College of Arts and Sciences are eligible to apply for international travel assistance to study abroad. They must have a declared major and complete 30 credit hours by the time they apply. 

More information about studying abroad can be found through the Gallagher Center, located in the ID Weeks Library. The Gallagher Center and the Study Abroad Ambassadors host Study Away 101 sessions every Monday and Tuesday from 2:30-3:30 in room 115. After a session, personalized meetings can be scheduled with the advisors to provide more direction in which study abroad opportunities would best fit each student.