Study abroad sending record number of students to foreign countries

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    A record number of Horned Frogs are finding their place in the global community.

    This spring, the study abroad program has the largest number of students the programs have ever had, said Jesica Severson, study abroad coordinator.

    Both the semester and summer programs offered by TCU, as well as the partner programs, have seen an increase in the number of students interested in participating.

    Fall 2015 had a 70 percent increase, said Severson, and summer programs now send over 300 students to countries across the globe.

    The turnout for spring 2016 is expected to be the largest number of students sent abroad to date.

    Various reasons account for the growing number of students who go abroad.

    Students who go abroad experience being fully immersed in a culture different from America’s.

    “One of my main goals is to become a more well-rounded human being and that starts by learning more about the world outside the United States,” said Liza Passalino, a sophomore communication studies major. “I love the United States, but it is the only thing I know. I cannot wait to see how my new-found perspective from all the places I visit will influence my decisions in the future.”

    Samantha Langley, a first-year social work major, said she studied abroad in Ghana for a summer in high school, and once she did that, she knew she had to study abroad for a semester in college.

    “I’m excited to make connections all over the world and to be able to experience a different life than the one I’ve lived the last 19 years,” Langley said.

    Students learn to appreciate aspects about America while abroad.

    “While I’m in Europe, I hope to gain a new appreciation for our world and the people in it. I hope to discover things about myself that push me forward in my pursuits, education and career,” sophomore theatre major Claire McCreight said.

    Study abroad helps students who are studying a foreign language immerse into a culture that speaks the language they are studying.

    Elle Repeta, a sophomore psychology major and Spanish minor, is studying abroad in Spain in the fall.

    “Going to a country that does not primarily speak English intimidates me, but I wanted to go out of my comfort zone because I wanted to get the most out of this opportunity,” Repeta said.

    The TCU in London program now has two locations: Roehampton and Westminster. The two other semester programs offered are in Florence, Italy, and Seville, Spain.

    TCU also works with partner programs such as CIE and IES. This means if a TCU student wishes to go to a location not offered by TCU, the student will still receive course credit. Students who go through partner programs typically go to other locations in Europe, South America, Australia and New Zealand.

    Severson said she believes study abroad programs truly helps meet the “responsible citizens in the global community” portion of the university’s mission statement.