Do, Learn Something Extra with Study Abroad at TAMIU

Do, Learn Something ‘Extra’
with Study Abroad at TAMIU

Students weighing their options about what to do next summer might want to consider adding a trip to a foreign country to their list of choices. Find out more about study abroad programs at Texas A&M International University’s Office of International Education (OIE) in Anthony J. and Georgia A. Pellegrino Hall (PH), room 301.

The deadline to submit a study abroad application for the summer is between February and April, depending on the program.

Usually thought of as a program exclusively for students studying a foreign language, students now go abroad for a variety of reasons.

“I needed a break!” joked Marc Andres, biology major, who just came back from China.

“Actually, that was taken as an advanced elective, but I wanted to go to China because I work in biology research and there are a lot of Chinese exchange students and fellows who work in research and I wanted to learn about their culture and customs,” Andres explained.

“It’s also a cheap and fun way to travel and it gives students the chance to learn something extra,” said Andres.

“No one can ever take away the experiences and knowledge you gain when you study abroad. You are open to a different world and become more open minded to what’s out there,” said Ana De La Garza, business major, who also went to China.

Still not consumed by a strong desire of wanderlust?

Consider that students receive college credit for courses taken abroad; classes are taught in English; programs vary between short-term programs and longer exchange programs; scholarships are available; all majors are eligible to study abroad.

Students who study abroad gain a better understanding of the world around them by expanding their classroom beyond campus.

“I work in the international business field, so I was able to learn how the supply chain works in China. I also learned about their culture, customs and traditions and work,” explained De La Garza.

“We went to a lot of different companies such as CIMC—China International Marine Containers—who manufactures containers and has 50 percent of the business in the world. We also went to the Shenzhen Stock Exchange,” said De La Garza.

This is also an ideal time to travel because not many jobs offer new employees three months off to trek through Europe or Asia.

Study Abroad programs include exchange programs that typically last one semester or one year, short-term programs that last four – six weeks and affiliate programs that are sponsored by study abroad organizations or other institutions.

Students may chose from five TAMIU affiliates offering study abroad programs on several continents when exploring their options.

“Our founder started this company 11 years ago after a bad study abroad experience. He decided he wanted to improve students’ experience abroad through ‘service first,’ which includes providing personal attention to students before, during and after their experience abroad,” explained Lee Guidry, Cultural Experiences Abroad (CEA) regional consultant.

“There are currently three TAMIU students in France—two in Paris and one in the French Alps,” Guidry added.

Perhaps money is a big factor in deciding to study abroad, especially with the declines in the dollar’s value against the euro in Europe, but there are still many affordable study abroad programs in Central or South America and Asia.

TAMIU also has many scholarship opportunities available from the International Education Fee Scholarship, the Guadalupe and Lilia Martínez International Fellows Scholarship and the Benjamin A. Gilman Scholarship. Last semester, all students who studied abroad received money to study abroad.

Other reasons to study abroad: learn communication and foreign language skills, appreciate other cultures, learn to become flexible and adapt to foreign or different situations, set and achieve goals, learn problem solving and patience and become independent-thinkers —skills that increase a student’s marketability in the job market.

“We had business meals like dinner with company executives … deans of colleges. I really enjoyed talking with the executives,” said Andres.

This summer, TAMIU will sponsor trips to Granada, Spain, Hong Kong, France, England, Taiwan, México and the Netherlands. These faculty-led short-term programs are four – six weeks long and the language of instruction is typically in English, except in language programs.

Students remain enrolled at TAMIU and pay TAMIU tuition and fees and the credits are calculated into the TAMIU GPA. There is also full transfer of federal, state and institutional financial aid.

Convinced yet?

Find out more online at tamiu.edu/dip/oie or stop by offices in PH 301.

For information, please contact Jannet Garcia, director, OIE, at 326.2565 or jannetg@tamiu.edu

University office hours are 8 a.m. – 5 p.m., Monday through Friday.

Journalists who need additional information or help with media requests and interviews should contact the Office of Public Relations, Marketing and Information Services at prmis@tamiu.edu