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Students Receive International Travel Grants

By Lisa Stratton
UWRF University Communications

JAN. 11, 2008-- Mark Twain once wrote that "travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness." Six students in the College of Arts and Aciences at the University of Wisconsin-River Falls were recently afforded the chance to expand their minds in diverse ways: each received a grant to travel internationally.

"Study and travel outside of our community is an opportunity to learn in new environments, to test our adaptability and receptivity to new ideas and cultural practices, and to be better prepared for the increasing contact among peoples and cultures they will experience during the global century," says UW-River Falls Chancellor Don Betz. "For the university and for our students, study and travel abroad is a sound and lasting investment."

Students receiving the grant receive up to $1,000 each. Applications requirements included having a major within the College of Arts and Sciences, at least 45 credits, a minimum GPA of 2.75, and a letter of recommendation from the student's advisor or a faculty member.

Jayme Argall, a senior from New Ulm, Minn., traveled in various areas in south-central Mexico for 21 days over semester break. Argall also previously spent a semester studying in Sevilla, Spain.

"In the future I plan on working for a nonprofit organization that works to improve conditions in Latin America. For this reason, experience in Mexico will be very valuable," says Argall. "Additionally, I am currently enrolled in a Latin American civilization course. It is one thing to read about something and see pictures of it in a text book; it is a whole other thing to actually see it in person."

Students are also able to complete some of their degree requirements while abroad. Lacey Traynor, a senior from Ellsworth, Wis., will be able to accomplish the student teaching component of her education while traveling this spring.

"I will be traveling to Quito, Ecuador to student teach from March to May. When I found out about the opportunities to student teach overseas, I was ecstatic," says Traynor. "Last year I was able to spend a semester in Mexico and take classes at a university. That was one of the greatest experiences of my life."

For some students, receiving a grant can make the difference between studying abroad or staying home; for others, it gives them the last bit of extra funding they need.

"When I work all summer, I can usually save enough money for tuition all year because I live at home," said Traynor. "However, this time I could see that I was going to really be stretching the money I had saved. I guess I just feel really lucky and thankful that I received the stipend."

            Other grants recipients are Krista Miller, Owen, Wis.; Nathaniel Wagner, Northfield, Minn.; Amie Wrisky, River Falls, Wis.; and Mary Zoubek, River Falls, Wis.



Last updated: Thursday, 22-Apr-2010 16:08:45 Central Daylight Time


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