Students’ options for studying abroad

Olivia Holt

San Diego City College offers an array of studying abroad programs that meet undergraduate requirements. Studying abroad is a great way not only to achieve academic needs, but to broaden your knowledge of other cultures around the world. If you think that spending a semester abroad is the right route for you, now would be the perfect time to start preparing for programs offered during Spring, Summer and Fall 2010.

“The classes we have for abroad are typically very appropriate to the environment”, said Marion Froehlich, the international education coordinator and immigration specialist at City College.

Two programs being offered during Spring 2010 are a 12-week program in Salamanca, Spain and 10-week program in Florence, Italy that begin in February. Both programs require 12 units to be completed prior to departure and students will take a full load while overseas.

Most study abroad programs require a 2.0 GPA, however a 2.5 GPA is required for Salamanca, Spain. “All the levels of Spanish that can be taken here at City together (are available, with Psychology, Sociology, Spanish Life and Culture and also students are permitted to take a maximum of one online class,” said Froehlich about the program offered in Salamanca, Spain.

“Florence is all about the Renaissance so you get to see all these famous paintings and sculptures that you’ve heard about, the famous David sculpture by Michelangelo and you go to the Uffizi Gallery and see all the Botticelli paintings. Instead of having to view slides, you see the real thing. You see the texture of the paints; you see how big it really is; you walk around the sculptures. I mean it just makes art come alive,” said Froehlich.

The program for Florence, Italy will be offering first and second semester Italian, Humanities, Art and English classes.

In July 2010, a four-week Spanish Immersion program in Cuernavaca, Mexico will begin. All levels of Spanish are offered and will be taught by on-site instructors and Brenda Munoz a City College Spanish professor will be heading with the students to Cuernavaca to supervise the academic program. Students will live with a host family and go on field trips on the weekends.

“I loved the program it was spectacular,” said Ernest Smith a student at City College, ” The weekend activities are amazing; you feel like you’re on a paid vacation.”

Mr. Ramiro Cuellar the Director of the Universal Language Institute in Cuernavaca said that traveling abroad and learning different languages and other cultures, “will help them (students), to see their own country from a different perspective. When you understand the different ways people think we can live in more harmony.”

The world is more global then ever, Ramiro went on to say, and when you can speak other languages and learn about other cultures there is less misunderstandings between people.

If you’ve completed 12 units and have a GPA of 2.0 or higher then you’re on the right path to study abroad. The first steps that should be taken if you’re planning a semester overseas is to fill out an application with Federal Student Aid (FASFA ) to see if you’re eligible for financial aid. You can go online at www.fasfa.ed.gov to fill out an free online application.

The next step is to apply for scholarships. “There are some incredible scholarships, it’s too late know for Spring 2010, but for Fall 2010 there is something called the Benjamin A. Gilman’s Scholarship, it’s sponsored by the Federal Government to help students study abroad who normally wouldn’t be able too,” said Froehlich. Students can be awarded 3,000 to 5,000 dollars and the San Diego Foundation also provides scholarships.

The deadline for fall programs is in April. To find out more about the scholarship visit www.IIE.org/gilman. Students can attain brochures, registrations forms, student conduct release forms and student information and release forms on all the study abroad programs for Spring and Summer 2010 if you visit www. sdcity.edu/studyabroad/ or contact Marion Froehlich at [email protected] or [email protected]

Upcoming programs for Fall 2010 will include: Capetown, South Africa, Barcelona, Spain and London, England.