Education Abroad holds information fair

Nicole Schladt

UK is committed to making a difference beyond the borders of its campus. But only 1.19 percent of college students breach these borders and study abroad, according to the Association of International Educators.

UK will address this issue Wednesday with the 2010 Education Abroad Fair. The fair will be held from 10:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. in the Student Center Grand Ballroom.

The fair is designed so students can learn about all of the international programs UK has to offer, including international exchanges, staff-led study abroad and third-party programs. There will also be live international entertainment, free t-shirts and prizes.

“Our goal for the fair is to launch the Education Abroad series for the year and to encourage UK students and faculty to internationalize the undergraduate experience,” said Anthony Ogden, the new Education Abroad Director at UK.

Ogden said he also hopes the fair will dispel many of the misconceptions associated with studying abroad.

“UK students don’t study abroad as much as they should. We have a lot of students say they are afraid of cost or time constraints,” he said. “The fair is a wonderful opportunity to learn the truth about these ‘myths’ of Education Abroad. The truth is that UK has programs for any discipline, any length of time, any place in the world.”

Education Abroad Adviser Sonya Cunningham echoed Ogden’s sentiments.

“Students often think that there are barriers keeping them from going abroad,” Cunningham said. “We, as advisers, will help students get all of the information they need to overcome any of these barriers.”

If students are unable to stop by the fair, more Education Abroad events will be held throughout the year.

These events will include sessions specifically tailored to different regions and themes. For example, a showcase of study abroad opportunities in Japan will be held Oct. 7. Another event scheduled for the early spring will promote summer programs abroad.

In the meantime, students can get a headstart on applying for study abroad by attending an Education Abroad First Step Session. These sessions are held on Mondays and Tuesdays from 4 to 5 p.m. and Wednesdays and Thursdays from 3 to 4 p.m. in Bradley Hall, room 207.

Students can also drop by the Education Abroad office during the week from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. to browse the resource room, talk with staff or discuss trip plans with the Education Abroad Peer Advisers.

“As an (Education Abroad Peer Adviser), I’m here to answer questions and help students find education abroad opportunities that match their interests,” said senior Jill Dobler, who studied in Ireland during the 2010 spring semester. “Study abroad was life-changing for me. I want to be able to share that experience with other students.”