Don’t regret it, just spend it, study abroad

Utah Tech’s dance department traveled to Florence, Italy, for a study abroad trip where they were able to study the art of dance, specifically ballet. While they were there they took many dance classes while seeing famous monuments and places around Italy. Photo courtesy of Christine Loveless.

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The study abroad program at Utah Tech University is a hidden gem that can give a students an unforgettable experience. 

There are about 14 faculty-led study abroad programs each school year. As well as two-week long summer programs and full semester exchange programs. Some of the locations include Mexico, South Africa, Iceland, Spain, Uganda, Italy, Taiwan, and the Dominican Republic.

Depending on the program, there can be up to 20 students going abroad, but 10 students are needed in order for a program to be official. 

Students will be enrolled in a semester course in order to learn more about the country they are going to and learn about the topics that will be covered on the trip. Students do get college credit, commonly towards their major, by taking these classes. 

One study abroad trip that is happening this year is to Greece. It will be led by Cindy King, assistant professor of English, this upcoming May. This trip will be focused on Myths and Monster: A Writer’s Odyssey in Greece. King said that the semester class spends time on reading Greek mythology, learning about convention of myths, and then students will develop their own contemporary myths. 

Taking this class in the spring semester will allow the students to enjoy their time on the trip. Students won’t have to worry about doing school work. They can just enjoy the places they are seeing.

In order to be part of a study abroad program, students can apply through the study abroad website by a certain deadline. There is a $35 application fee. General requirements to study abroad are to be 18-years-old by the time of the trip and to have at least a 2.0 GPA. Once you get accepted into the program, you will be added to the class by the faculty adviser. You will take a class throughout the semester, pay the fees and take a safety course to prepare for the country you’re visiting. Students will then need to book their flight, follow their itinerary and enjoy their time abroad.

The biggest reason that holds students back from going to study abroad is finances. Each trip comes with a program cost along with other tuition fees. The program costs include lodging, meals, excursion and instructor fees. However, airfare is not included.

There are resources that are available to help students afford their program costs.

Christine Loveless, study abroad program coordinator, said students can use their academic scholarships to help pay for the tuition that is tied to the academic course portion of their study abroad program as well as FAFSA.

There is a high impact practice scholarship students can apply for to receive $500 toward program costs. The Utah Tech study abroad website has extra scholarships students can apply for to help the costs.

Taylor Taft, a senior dance major from Herriman, said: “I got a couple of different little scholarships from the extra funding from the study abroad program. I had to give a powerpoint to the school for $500 which helped to pay for the tuition to take summer classes. My instructor was really good at searching out scholarships we could apply for.” 

Once finances are figured out, students will be able to stress less and enjoy their trip. Study abroad is a highly recommend time to all those that have gone before.

Taft said: “I would recommend studying abroad. In my experience, dance is so different around the world. I built stronger relationships with people in my program, and I got to network with my professor and people across the world. I was able to live like a local, which is a rare and great opportunity, especially after living in Utah my whole life.”

There is a noticeable growth that study abroad brings. It can be an eye-opening and once in a lifetime opportunity.

Loveless said: “[Students] were able to see and immerse themselves in an area that is very different from here and their eyes were open to some challenges that others have in other countries. They got hands-on, practical application of things they have been studying in their classroom. Even for a few people, it has changed how they approach their education.”

Studying abroad can offer beneficial opportunities and unforgettable memories to those who have the means and chance to go. 

To find out more about the study abroad program or to apply visit: https://studyabroad.utahtech.edu/.