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Study Abroad Expo reveals international opportunties for students, faculty

October 06, 2009 12:00AM

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It's a fantastic way to broaden a person's educational horizons and find internship and research opportunities. "
~ Julia Helminiak, PSU's study abroad coordinator
r ago, Psychology and Counseling graduate student Allison Keegan had an epiphany after a professor assigned her to participate in an activity that would draw her out of her comfort zone and make her a more compassionate counselor.

Keegan chose to attend a festival put on by Saudi Arabian students attending Pittsburg State University. After sitting at a table all evening surrounded by students from a variety of countries, the 24-year-old realized how eye-opening it was to learn about other cultures - and knew any hesitations she'd had about studying abroad needed to be put behind her.

Now, after spending the past summer traveling and studying in Finland, South Korea, and Australia, Keegan is eager to tell others about the summer she will never forget.

"I always had the mindset that I could never study abroad, that it was only for affluent people," she said. "I've always had to work a lot and pay my way through college. I thought it was only the lucky people who get to have those experiences."

Hers is a story PSU Study Abroad Coordinator Julia Helminiak hopes other students hear. The annual Study Abroad Fair, which features multiple information booths with details on both individual and upcoming group study abroad trips, will be held at 10 a.m. on Wednesday, Oct. 7, at PSU's Overman Student Center.

Students will be able to learn about several upcoming study abroad opportunities, as well as learn about new trips, such as a three-week expedition next June to the University of La Rochelle in France through the College of Business. Students interested in studying abroad individually can also speak to international students and employees from the Office of International Programs and Services regarding scholarship availability and creating the trip that's right for them.

"We're interested in working with students and faculty members who want to travel abroad," Helminiak said. "With additional money available for study abroad stipends, we hope everyone who wants to go can get some financial help. It's a fantastic way to broaden a person's educational horizons and find internship and research opportunities."

For more information on the Study Abroad Expo, contact the Office of International Programs and Services at 620-235-4680.

---Pitt State---

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