Increased diversity in study abroad programs would benefit students, university

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    The Center for International Studies is stepping up its efforts to encourage minority involvement in study abroad programs, and that can only lead to positive outcomes.

    Minority students have been an underrepresented group in study abroad programs across the nation. The university study abroad department has partnered with Inclusiveness and Intercultural Services and plans to speak with students in the Community Scholars programs in hopes of fixing this trend.

    Increasing study abroad participation, especially among minority students, could help graduates to be able to succeed in today’s global economy.

    Study abroad coordinator Alexis Branaman said the main reason for low minority participation studying abroad at the university is a misconception about the costs of studying abroad.

    Many students do not realize scholarships can apply to study abroad trips, need-based grants are available and studying abroad can fit into a graduation plan without adding extra time and classes.

    Communicating this information to students, along with the planned partnerships and efforts of the study abroad department, could help attract minority students and more students in general.

    More students and more diversity in study abroad programs would be good for both students’ sake and the university’s.

    Managing editor Mark Bell for the editorial board.