A whole new world: studying abroad at UF

 

Abigail Frye

frya@findlay.edu

@Abigail_EF

 

It’s hard to imagine just how big the world is when living in Findlay, Ohio. Luckily, the University of Findlay wants to show students just how much opportunity the world can offer. Students can go to the Office of International Education to hear more about the different trips UF has to offer.

There is no requirement for certain majors or the student’s year of school as anyone is allowed to apply for the study abroad programs. There is also no absolute length for all study abroad programs and they can range from four weeks to a full academic year. The short-term study abroad trips will take place over academic breaks to allow for students to still attend normal classes. Destination spots include Africa, Asia, Australia, Europe, South America, Central America, and the Caribbean.

Lauren Omerzo, a junior Pre-vet major, explains that other students should take the chance to explore the world.

“You never know what kind of experiences you will have!” said Omerzo. “It changes you. It opens you up to a whole new way of thinking and gives you a different outlook on life.”

Omerzo had studied abroad in Thailand for 14 weeks during her sophomore year, and she explained that it gave her so much newfound knowledge.

“Every other week I changed to a different area of Thailand so I could learn about different areas of veterinary medicine,” said Omerzo. “We learned about everything from elephants all the way to the fish in the sea well in Koh Toa.”

Sydney Berlekamp, a senior Pre-Occupational therapy major, also expressed how much her trip abroad meant to her, though she participated in relief abroad as opposed to studying abroad. Berlekamp offered her help abroad in Ecuador in May of 2019.

“I loved being able to serve a community of Quito and Sangloqui and experience a new culture,” said Berlekamp. “I was able to learn the basics of a new language and I had to adapt to the lifestyle while I was there.”

Both Berlekamp and Omerzo explained how challenging the language and cultural barriers can be, but the experience was more than worth the reward.

“I would go back to Ecuador in a heartbeat and I would recommend a service trip abroad to anyone because it allows you to form a great appreciation and understanding of the world outside of your comfort zone,” said Berlekemp.

Omerzo also encourages students to check out study abroad opportunities, stating, “there is so much more to the world than what you see, you just have to be willing to take the chance.”

“It really immerses you into a different culture and life learning setting!” Omerzo stated.

There are more opportunities within UF than just what you see in the classroom. For more information about the opportunities, students have to study abroad get in contact with Eileen Rucki, Director of International Education, her email is rucki@findlay.edu.

 

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