Many students enter college their freshman year with the desire to study abroad but aren't sure where to start. Auburn Abroad is a hidden gem of Auburn University in which they help students select the study abroad program that best fits their needs and desires. Auburn Abroad has their own programs and they also affiliate with other study abroad companies in order to widen the range of programs available to students.
Auburn Abroad's programs offer pre-approved courses, an on-site faculty member and direct credit back on to the student's institutional GPA. They offer programs on every continent, including Antarctica, and they offer specialized programs through most colleges within the university.
The goal of Auburn Abroad is to have students study abroad and stay on track for graduation. Freshman through seniors can study abroad and Auburn Abroad ensures that the students will remain on track to graduate even if they study abroad for an entire semester. There have even been students who have studied abroad more than once! Oftentimes students will study abroad for a summer and then decide they either want to go for another summer or even for an entire semester.
Studying abroad is a life-changing experience for most students. It allows you to see the world in a completely different environment and culture. The culture shock can be overwhelming for some but in the end, it teaches students valuable lessons about adapting to and accepting different cultures. When a student studies abroad, they go into a completely new atmosphere. Oftentimes the native language of their host country is not English and this can allow for an excellent way to learn a new language. Sometimes students will stay with host families who speak little-to-no English which allows for a complete emersion into the country's language and family culture.
Brennan Braverman, a student that lived with a host family in Italy, said, "The mother and children did not speak any English but the father knew basic English. We learned to communicate using hand gestures and they helped me improve on my Italian. Living with a family who did not speak the same language as me was challenging but extremely rewarding." (Photo left: Anna Cook ~ AU Liberal Arts Summer Program in Vienna, Austria ~ Sum...)
Students also have the option to live in dorm style housing, apartments and even hotels varying on what the program offers. There are programs that last just two weeks and there are programs that last an entire semester so there is an option for everyone.
Studying abroad offers an unprecedented opportunity to live and engage in other cultures and it offers a sense of freedom for most students. When students study abroad they often have the chance to travel to other cities and countries. Seeing the world on your own as a student really allows students to appreciate the world around them in a way they may not have previously viewed it.
Lauren Roalkvan, Auburn Abroad Coordinator, said, "I love when students light up when they come in and get to talk about where they have already been or where they get to travel to. Seeing that spark of enthusiasm in students makes my job extremely fulfilling."
Having the opportunity to study abroad is a once in a lifetime experience for many students. It allows not only educational growth but also allows for personal growth.
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