Students get opportunity to look into trips

Richard Kelly

Eds. Note: This article has been amended to reflect the comments of Dr. Dmitri Nizovtsev; the comments can be found below the article.

With billboards for foreign countries posted around Memorial Union, the Washburn Study Abroad Fair was in full swing Thursday.

Students had the opportunity to look into trips that would take them to all around the world. Trips to France, Japan, Germany, Mexico and other locations were the subject of many conversations.

However, many students worry about finances for a trip of such magnitude, because studying abroad can be very expensive. Fortunately, Washburn offers scholarships to pay for part of the cost of the trip. One of the ways is through the department that is offering the trip.

“Washburn has been quite generous with scholarships, and most students who partake in The Magellan Exchange receive about $2000 from the university and $800 from the school of business,” said Dmitri Nizovtsev, associate professor of economics. Clarification: The amount awarded to students is flexible and depends on many factors, including GPA, availability of funds, etc.

Another reason to get involved in studying abroad is to incorporate the Washburn Transformational Experience. In this sense, a student is killing two birds with one stone.

“If you’re willing to commit the money and have the openness and willingness to try new food and be faced with new situations, I definitely recommend incorporating studying abroad with the transformational experience,” said Lori Spurgeon, academic advisor. “It can really allow you a sense of what else is out there.”

If studying abroad during a school term isn’t what sounds right, other options are available. Service Learning and Volunteering was on hand at the fair and has options available for semester terms during the summer. Additionally, there is a study abroad program which travels to Japan annually during the summer. But because Japanese schools stay open year-round, it may be another possibility.

“I’ve never actually made the trip myself, but I’ve always wanted to,” said Errin Thompson, a junior at Washburn. “Even if you don’t know any Japanese, you should still go.”

What it boils down to for most students is whether it’s worthwhile to travel abroad, both for financial reasons and not being able to see family members. The message seems clear, though, that students always learn a lot about different cultures and enjoy their time in other countries.

“Every student I’ve talked to who took part in the study abroad program says the same thing to me,” said Nizovtsev. “That they want to do it again and they have such a different perspective on things now. You really do learn a lot from studying abroad.”