Transitions Abroad Magazine
Student Guide to Studying, Volunteering, and Working Overseas
Spring 2007 Vol. 1, NO.2
Pre-College and Gap Year
Study Abroad: Participant Stories
Study Abroad Advisor
Work, Intern, Volunteer Abroad
International Career Advisor
Graduate Studies, Fellowships, Scholarships
From The Editor
It came as a disappointment that the Lincoln Study Abroad Fellowship Program did not receive the federal funding it sought in 2006. This funding would have enabled it to achieve its goal of dramatically increasing and diversifying the number of U.S. undergraduate students studying abroad each year. To its credit, however, the program received tremendous support from Congress and from many of you—students, college alumni, and international education professionals who recognize our need for global preparedness.
Americans increasingly and overwhelmingly support educational opportunities that advance world knowledge and cultural sensitivity. According to a national survey commissioned by NAFSA: Association of International Educators in 2005, Americans in numbers ranging from 77 to more than 90 percent believe that it is important for their children to learn other languages, study abroad, attend a college where they can interact with international students, learn about other countries and cultures, and generally be prepared for a global age.
Although the program was not funded last year, 28 senators co-sponsored the Abraham Lincoln Study Abroad Act of 2006 prior to the November elections. This show of support gives the legislation strong momentum heading into this year, when NAFSA will bring it before the Congress again. The commission and the legislation both seek to have one million American students studying abroad within a decade. The legislation would authorize support for institutional reforms to encourage study abroad, as well as funds for fellowships administered by the Department of State and by individual institutions.
This legislation marks another major stepping stone in the history of study abroad, one that, despite its relatively short history, is rich and complex, as I learned from reading A History of Study Abroad: Beginnings to 1965. This recently published book—the first-ever history of study abroad—written by study abroad expert William Hoffa, sheds light on the formative forces of this phenomenon that we take for granted today as an accepted part of higher education. I had the pleasure of discussing A History of Study Abroad with Dr. Hoffa in early February 2007.
It was fitting that Transitions Abroad interviewed Dr. Hoffa, as he was the magazine’s first international education editor. He worked with Transitions Abroad founder Dr. Clay A. Hubbs to develop the magazine’s Education Abroad section as a reliable and useful source of information and advice on educational opportunities abroad for students and those working in the field of education abroad. This section expanded and morphed into Transitions Abroad’s Student Guide.
And, just as the Student Guide is carrying on many of the hallmarks of Transitions Abroad’s former Education Abroad section, we are continuing its annual Student Writing Contest as well. This year’s winners, Lauren Anne Underhill and Lauren Elliot, traveled outside the United States for their first time when studying abroad. We chose their essays for first and second place respectively, because both express the life-changing and transformative nature of study abroad as an experience that not only enriches students’ education, but also contributes significantly to their personal development.
If you are a currently enrolled college or university student who has studied, worked, or volunteered abroad, we invite you to submit your article for the Student Writing Contest.