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Are Bloomsburg students still interested in study abroad post-covid?

Bri Raymond
Bloomsburg honors student, Micheal Harry.

In a world pre-COVID-19, study abroad was one of the most enticing programs offered at universities. Since leaving quarantine and returning to normality, one of the biggest challenges is restarting these types of exciting programs. Studying abroad has been known to be one of the best parts of going to college and getting to experience a new culture and education.

A search for funding

Dr. Hintz, the director of the honors college, described how difficult it has been since the integration to find the money to make studying abroad more affordable, and to find faculty who have time while wanting to run these different programs.

Before COVID, the honors college used to host an annual affordable trip to Poland, but it was canceled because of the pandemic and has yet to be brought back. Dr. Hintz emphasized that there are plans to bring back another annual and more affordable trip to study abroad with money that was recently donated to them.  

It seems that the most common worry having to do with studying abroad is the money. Right now, on average, a plane ticket to Europe is anywhere from $500-1,500. Being a college student and having to pay for most things on your own, it can be difficult to rationalize spending that much money on a plane ticket alone.

“I would love to study abroad, and I plan on doing it, but the cost of living has increased so much that it is hard to find the time and money,” stated freshman Kimmy Wissinger. Students are interested but the cost is what scares them away.  

Planning around a busy schedule

Another issue that seems to come up is the planning and programs involved. “I’m only a freshman right now, but I would love to study abroad at some point. I would be interested in seeing what programs are offered, but I would only go if it was affordable,” stated honors student, Micheal Harry.

Many students plan on studying abroad as juniors and seniors, as freshman year can be daunting on its own to many people. “Studying abroad would be fun, but having to plan it all around school work and trying to find the money can be tricky to do,” stated nursing major, Ava Steffe.

The future of studying abroad seems hopeful and can get back to the point in which it was before COVID-19. With proper programs and willing faculty, studying abroad can be brought back bigger and better, as long as the cost is reasonable.  

Even while studying abroad is still a valued part of college life, there are several obstacles in the way of its resurgence after COVID-19. Student accessibility is hampered by logistical challenges and financial limitations. However, there’s some optimism for its revival thanks to initiatives to raise money and streamline operations.

In the future, scheduling and budget issues must be resolved in order to guarantee fair access. Despite challenges, there remains hope for study abroad to have a strong return, highlighting its continued importance in higher education.

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