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GSC Travels Abroad to London

The Glenville Democrat of Glenville, West Virginia

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Some studies have found that less than 10% of higher education students in the United States travel abroad at some point prior to their graduation. Through several initiatives, Glenville State College is aiming to provide more opportunities for our students to experience the cultural exchange that happens when learning is explored on a global scale. In addition to new projects like Collaborative Online International Learning (COIL) courses where students get to interact with their peers in other countries, GSC students aire also participating in traditional study abroad trips.

Just this summer a group of students and faculty traveled to London for a study abroad experience. Members of the GSC Honors Program had discussed the idea of such a trip and worked hard to make it a reality. They talked about who would go and what they would do while they were there, but first they had to raise the money to cover the travel expenses. They held spaghetti dinners, basket raffles, and collected donations to pay for the travel expenses of the trip.

The students who attended were Morgan Allen, Larisa Gordon, and Melissa Davis. They agree that the ability to see another culture firsthand was truly unique. "I have a new found respect for how different cultures interact all living together as one," said Allen. "I enjoyed seeing the sights of London and the history behind them. After my study abroad experience, I have gained confidence and drive to continue traveling in the future," added Gordon. Allen and Gordon are both Honors Program Students and Davis is a Hidden Promise Scholar.

While in London the group toured art museums, castles, and Stonehenge. They also took part in a theater class and visited sites where popular movies like the Harry Potter series had been filmed. In addition to the students, GSC Professor of Communications Dennis Wemm and his wife Nancy, GSC associate Professor of English Dr. Jonathon Minton, and former professor Dr. Sallie Anglin took part in the trip.

"Employers throughout the U.S. consistently emphasize the advantages of global competencies in the hiring process. These competencies may be acquired through education abroad, which now includes internships or service-learning projects. What this means for students is that, in addition to being fun, traveling is also an investment in one' s career after college. All other things being equal, Melissa, Morgan and Larisa may be offered jobs precisely because they participated in an education abroad experience," said Dr. Megan Gibbons, GSC Assistant Professor of Spanish and Director of International Programs.

In a world where nearly every occupation is untouched by globalization, experiences like these are very valuable for students. Plans are being made for other study abroad trips specifically for criminal justice and environmental science students as well as trips to World War II battle sites. Currently, eleven students have signed up for the criminal justice in London trip being offered in May 2016. Other destinations available to students next year include Canada, Germany, and Mexico.

Students in the Honors Program extend their thanks to community members who donated to their fundraisers and specifically to the Corner Stone Cafe, Waco Oil and Gas, Flying W Plastics, Glenville Advance Auto Parts, Joe and June Evans, the Gilmer County Volunteer Fire Department, Watch Me Grow Daycare, the Glenville State College Office of Admissions, and the GSC Foundation for helping make their trip possible.

For more information about programs such as these, contact Gibbons at or (304) 462-6328.

Copyright 2015 The Glenville Democrat, Glenville, West Virginia. All Rights Reserved. This content, including derivations, may not be stored or distributed in any manner, disseminated, published, broadcast, rewritten or reproduced without express, written consent from SmallTownPapers, Inc.

Original Publication Date: November 5, 2015

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