Acknowledging students abroad

The opportunity for summer study abroad is lightly advocated and underacknowledged here at Wooster. Students who study abroad hardly get recognition for the academic challenges they overcome once the spring term is finished.

I spent my summer visiting the production sites of Mercedes in Germany the factories of world- renowned fashion icon Prada; Heinekin, world leaders in beer production and distribution, and media moguls like BBC and Al Jazeera in London.

Aside from these and other field studies, I also participated in discussions about globalization at the London School of Economics with a U.S. adviser for NATO and with French professors about their view of the world ‚Ä” all while analyzing the economic and political theory behind many of these aspects and how a globalizing Europe has responded to the challenges and opportunities presented within the European Union.

Although completing all of the above field studies and more, plus weekly tests and a final exam, I completed a rigorous, yet enjoyable course through Syracuse University. However, no recognition is given to me. The International Programs Office hands you a booklet of possible opportunities and sends you on your way. The registrar can not give definitive answers as to how the course will transfer. After getting an “okay” from a professor that this course should be accepted as a legitimate course, the registrar said that the credits may transfer.

I know that many of the activities provided for returning and departing students are to help reacquaint or readjust them, but something needs to change to help promote this opportunity because many people miss the chance to study abroad during a semester either because they are involved in sports, have a double major so they have to double up on the Junior Independent Study, or various other reasons.

Looking for options to study abroad next summer? Plan on going at it alone, but take the opportunity. Studying at Wooster for four years could turn any sane person up the wall. Traveling and studying in a different country is an experience that no one should pass by. Besides this point, as I’m not going to continue this path of encouragement, the International Programs Office needs to take better care of the students studying abroad in the summer and make it a known opportunity.

Brenton Allen is a Senior Staff Writer for the Voice. He can be reached for comment at ballen09@wooster.edu.

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