What if your first year away from home and in the college scene involved
actual trips to Buckingham Palace? Trafalger Square? Stonehenge and The
Tower of London?
This fall, college freshman at the University of Tampa
will have an opportunity to experience that and more in UT's new Freshman Abroad
of the academic reasons we've been pursuing this program is because we
think it's a valuable experience for students to spend a semester
abroad, but over the last 20-30 years or so, certain majors have gotten
more and more prescriptive of what they require of students when they
come in," says Kevin Beach
associate dean of the baccalaureate experience who is helping to
coordinate the program. "Once a student starts on campus, if they're in
one of those majors, perhaps the sciences, education, nursing, it's very
difficult for those students to take a semester off, then come back and
reintegrate into the program."
For this reason, the Freshman Abroad
program allows select students to experience studying abroad before
getting rooted into their major. Beach says by sending first year
students, they're not as indoctrinated into their programs yet and they
feel like they have a little more freedom to get out and experience this
While a few other universities across the country
have freshman study abroad programs, this will be UT's first.
Approximately 30 students will be studying at Roehampton University
in southwest London. Participation in the program allows students to
also fulfill some of their general education requirements. Beach says
Freshman Abroad is also a way to attract and catch the attention of
really good students and introduce them to the exceptional program
offerings at UT.
Olivia Doctor will be one of the first
participants in UT's Freshman Abroad program this fall. She graduated
from Rutherford High School in Panama City in June 2010 and says she is excited to be one of the students
accepted to participate.
"I'm looking forward to just being in
England, meeting new people and experiencing the culture. It's a great
opportunity and it's going to be a lot of fun!" says Doctor. She also
mentioned she was really pleased that all scholarships transferred and
it didn't cost extra to participate.
UT's Freshman Abroad
program invites the most academically qualified students to
participate. "We want to make sure these students are real ambassadors
of the United States, and ambassadors of the University of Tampa," says
Writer: Nancy Vaughn
Source: Kevin Beach, University of Tampa