A window inside life at Augustana College

Study Abroad . . . Everywhere!

I did not, unfortunately, get to see President Obama in Davenport because I had a class that was kind of important and it is week 10, after all. However, I did get to go to the Study Abroad Fair last Saturday. I moved to the US about four years ago from India, so you could say I’ve been studying abroad since I was fourteen. Still, I love traveling and I’d really love to go to Europe.

The variety of programs that Augustana has to offer is quite amazing: London, Australia, Amsterdam, Berlin, Nicaragua, Ecuador, Spain, Greece . . . you name it, we probably have it. I wandered around in kind of a daze at the fair, stopping at so many tables and picking up so many flyers. The Fair was actually quite confusing because what seemed like the entire sophomore class was wandering around Olin stopping at different rooms to check out tables for different programs. The next step will be information meetings for each of the programs. I have a feeling I’ll be going to quite a few.

Two awesome things I learned about study abroad at Augustana:

1) All financial aid travels with you. If you have a scholarship here for winter term and you’re in Australia winter term, that scholarship will help pay the program cost.

2) Augie Choice: If you’re a prospective student, you’ve probably heard this mentioned way too many times, but I want to say it again because Augie Choice is such an awesome program. Each student (once they become a junior or senior) is guaranteed $2000 to use for study abroad or an internship (or an internship abroad). With Augie choice, some programs cost less than a term at Augie would because it’s like you have an extra $2000 scholarship.

It’s been my dream to visit London for a really long time. I’m a huge Harry Potter fan, and Britain is the land of Harry Potter. A tour of Leavesden Studios (where all the Potter movies were filmed) has opened recently, and I’ve really wanted to visit. Also, I’m a huge cricket fan (India is quite a cricket-crazy country) and Lord’s Cricket Ground in London is one of the most famous cricketing arenas in the world. But the only London program being offered next year is a summer internship program which is quite expensive. I have friends who went on London Term last year, and that will probably be offered fall term of my senior year. Should I wait? I don’t know…

I’m also seriously considering (if I don’t wait for London Term, that is) going on one of the exchange programs. Augie offers four semester-long or term-long exchange programs in Germany, Uppsala (Sweden), Botswana (Africa) and China. Those programs would be quite different because we’d actually be studying at the host university for a term instead of traveling and taking classes with a large group of Augie students. I have a friend who’s in Botswana currently and she’s absolutely loving it.

Options are a good thing, but sometimes too many options can be a bit bewildering. Oh well, this is why they have the Fair right before fall break. I’m going to talk it over with my parents when I see them at home and hopefully, I will emerge with a clearer idea of what I want to or can do about studying abroad.

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