University offers students chances to study abroad
For students interested, opportunities to travel the world may be within their grasp.
The University will be offering students the chance to visit Florence this upcoming Summer I session as part of a study abroad program, which is scheduled for June 9 through June 29.
Last week was International Education week. Not just at the University, but all around the world. As a result, the University received a visit from Sara Bularzik of the Center for Academic Programs Abroad out of their U.S. headquarters in Boston.
“This is for students world wide,” Bularzik said. “Even people in China can be learning about opportunities to study in America.”
The Center for Academic Programs Abroad has been hosting faculty led programs with universities across America since 1972 as well as offering overseas internships
Bularzik spoke on Nov. 15 at the Student Union as part of a study abroad information session. At the session, Bularzik both presented information and answered questions about an upcoming study abroad trip to Florence the University will be offering.
“My job is a lot of university relations,”Bularzik said. “When a student has questions about how much it cost to get a passport or about getting a visa, I help with these questions as well.”
Four professors will be spearheading this trip to Italy including Philip Zwerling, who will be teaching the classes travel writing and art of writing, and Rosalva Resendiz who will be teaching two classes on Italian crime and justice.
Lodging, insurance, excursion, transportation and museum entrance fees are all covered by the program. However, students will have to pay for the international airfare, personal expenses, meals as well as the tuition, which costs $2,923.
“College is just a really great time to explore another country,” Bularzik said. “Any student who has a need to travel and experience a unique learning experience will find something beneficial.”
Along with the trip to Italy, the University will be offering trips to the countries of Costa Rica, England, Salamanca and two separate trips to France during the Summer I semester.
Before students can start packing their bags, there is a list of requirements they have to meet. First and foremost, an application form that has to be signed by the professor offering the course and the department chair. Next, the student has to acquire a letter of intent and a letter of recommendation from a UTPA faculty member. Lastly, the student must submit their official transcript, 2 passport pictures and a copy of their Passport.
Once the application package is completed, students can turn it into the UTPA Office of International Programs where they will then have to fill out Responsibility Agreements such as a Participation Approval Form, Release and Indemnification Agreement and an International Health Disclosure Form.
When the students travel abroad, they won’t be attending a foreign campus. Instead, students will go to locations run by the Center for Academic Programs Abroad. These locations are built to accommodate for visiting students with their own classrooms, libraries, computer labs and lounge café areas, but it’s not all work and no play.
“It’s not just studying in a classroom. You get to go out into the streets and see churches, plazas and other locations of interest. It’s much different from studying back at home,” Bularzik said. “Let’s say you want to visit Rome for the weekend, we also give advice on how to make travel plans or even just what Italian restaurant is good to eat at.”