Go abroad and set the world aflame

The Office of International Programs held their annual Study Abroad Fair on Wednesday, Sept. 19, to introduce BC students to numerous studying opportunities all over the world.

At Conte Forum, more than 100 representatives from universities worldwide awaited students eager to further their studies outside the U.S.. Interested students were able to talk with the representatives, current exchange students as well as fellow BC students at the fair.

“45 percent of BC students get involve in the studying abroad program, almost one of every two students at BC takes his or her trip to somewhere else to study. Most importantly, the number is still increasing, ” Maria Seagala, the study aboard application specialist, said. The enthusiasm of studying abroad continues to rise every year.

In front of Germany's booth, Avila Yin, A&S’ 15, signed up for the Catholic University Eichstaett-Ingolstadt program. “Germany has the best philosophy department in the world. It has great minds such as Goethe, Nietzsche and Marx. I should definitely check it out,” Yin, a philosophy major, said.

In addition to furthering study in a specialized field, study abroad programs also advance second language skills. This has become one of the biggest incentives for students to go abroad. “I studied French since 5th grade. I want to go to France next fall semester and be encircled by that beautiful language,” Angella Jung, A&S’ 15, said.

In the last few years, the most popular destinations have been London, Paris and Madrid. However, as the Office of International Programs adds more programs in Asia and Latin America, an emerging number of students plan to study in places outside of Europe.

Jessica Petznick, A&S’ 13, was an exchange student in Chile. When she joined the “poverty and development” program, she spent her full day with the children in the inner cities of Chile. It was a good way to learn Spanish with the kids at the same language level as her, Petznick said of her experience. She also said that she gained a sense of justice through this program, which she couldn't have learned from somewhere else.

“To study abroad, you get a chance to learn about different cultures and to know other people. Recalling the words ‘Go, set the world aflame' from convocation, I want to be engaged with people around me and make friends from all over the world,” Pine Wu, A&S’ 16, said. “Studying abroad gives people new perspectives and provides a bigger picture. By seizing this chance, I will torch my heart and set the world aflame.”

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Jing Xu