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d a o r b A y Stud rnational Programs and Ser vices A Newsletter from the Center for Inte

Spring 2015

Important Dates

Trip of a Lifetime

January 28

By Caitlyn Tait

Study Abroad Fair 10am - 2pm – University Center Ballroom

I went to San Jose, Costa Rica with the five week CEA Medical Spanish and Health Science program in the summer of 2014. Studying abroad had always been a dream of mine, but being a biology major on a pre-med route I didn’t know if it would ever be possible. I was strolling through the study abroad fair this past spring wasting time in between classes, when I saw a table with a Medical Spanish flyer. I Immediately started to look into it some more since I am pursuing a Spanish minor and having a medical Spanish course will look extraordinary on an application. As I looked into more programs that were similar, I found CEA to have the best package for the price. The program allowed me to take a health elective course taught in English worth 3 credits, and a medical Spanish class worth 5 credits. The program also included multiple excursions and 2 meals a day for a price that was more affordable when compared to the US. With the CEA option I was able to meet many people from all over the country instead of going with only University of Memphis students, which has expanded my networking circle greatly along with making true lifelong friends.


Studying abroad is more than taking classes that you could at the U of M in a different country. By studying abroad, you are able to live with a host family that truly cares about you and wants you to love their country as much as they do. Throughout the week, you can go to classes in the morning and study in the afternoon in parks that allow you to see the beauty of your new home country. At night, you meet the locals of the city that you are studying in and you’re able to learn more about their culture. On weekends, you are able to travel around your host country and do things that you may never be able to do again. On my travels I repelled down five waterfalls, zip lined in the mountains for 3 hours, went to a beach on the Pacific coast, hiked through the rainforest, and went to both day and night tours of the Costa Rican nature allowing me to see animals in their native environment. In a five week period of studying in Memphis I would never have been able to do all that, while remaining relatively stress free.

Costa Rica

(Cont’d on next page 6)

Hear from past program participants. Ask faculty questions about particular destinations. Learn about financial aid and scholarship opportunities. January 30 Gilman Scholarship Overview Workshop 1pm – 3pm – University Center Bluff Room (304) February 3 Gilman Scholarship Overview Workshop 1pm – 3pm – University Center Memphis Room (340) February 13 Gilman Scholarship Essay Review Workshop 1pm – 3pm – University Center Beale Room (363) February 27 Fulbright Program Workshop 1pm – 3pm – Brister Hall 219 March 1 Summer and Fall Scholarship Application Deadline

You can also keep up with important dates and the latest news at

Skateboard Diaries: My Time in Wuhan, China By Israel Polo

Israel Polo in China The short time that I recently spent abroad gave me insight into a world that I had for so long fantasized about since I was young. Thanks to the Gilman Scholarship, the University of Memphis Study Abroad Scholarship and a TRiO grant, I was able to travel and participate in an intensive summer Chinese program in Wuhan, China, which had a profound impact on my outlook on life. Born in Los Angeles into a poor, single parent household, the culture of skateboarding gave me the eagerness of seeing life outside my home. I never had much money growing up but that didn’t stop me from dreaming and going out every day to skateboard. Since skateboarding gave me a taste for adventure and exploration, I have always dreamt about other possibilities. As a person who has never left the country prior to traveling to China, I was enthusiastic about my journey and the boundaries I would break. This enthusiasm was exactly what was needed to succeed in this program. The four-week intensive Chinese language program consisted of classes five days a week, four hours a day. Although the program was intensive and required much studying, I knew spending a lot of time in the library would not be so beneficial. I planned to travel outside of campus and to the surrounding neighborhoods to put my Mandarin to the test. I wanted to improve my language skills. Interacting with native speakers, and traveling around the city were the best way to do this. So with my skateboard and a just a few Yuan (Chinese currency) in hand, I ventured around the city of Wuhan utilizing my reading, writing, and conversation skills to find my way around. I wanted to get lost to see if I could find my way


back to where we were staying at Central China Normal University. I recall many days in which I traveled a great distance exploring Wuhan on my skateboard. It was often intimidating but well worth it considering what I discovered. On one occasion I ventured to the outskirts of the city after an hour of skating and discovered a community garden where a few people lived in shacks with no electricity. The area was a designated preserve and was surrounded by lakes and trees as far as I could see. A couple of days later I visited a farm close to the city. I noticed the living condition of the people living on the farm was just as bad as the inhabitants of the community garden. Visiting both of these areas affirmed for me that China still had some development issues to contend with in spite of what we hear in the media about it overcoming the United States economically. Exploring Wuhan on my skateboard and interacting with its people in real world situations were great ways to develop my Mandarin skills. The combination of intensive classes and the everyday practical use of Chinese facilitated my language ability to improve significantly in a month’s time. These experiences have inspired me to pursue a Master’s degree in Philosophy in Shanghai, China upon graduating from the University of Memphis. I encourage other students to take advantage of study abroad opportunities available to them. This is a great opportunity to leave your comfort zone and discover a new sense of self. I am glad I took my journey and cannot wait until the next one.

China Summer Bridge for High School Students The Chinese Bridge Summer Camp for U.S. High School Students is an immersion camp sponsored by Hanban, the Confucius Institute Headquarters. This exciting two-week summer camp offers students a unique chance to experience China on a personal level. Campers will have intensive but fun language study as well as a wide range of culture related classes, such as Chinese geography and history, martial arts, calligraphy, brush painting, paper-cutting, and Chinese music and arts appreciation workshops. Campers will also visit cultural landmarks, historical site,

and museums in and surrounding areas of Beijing. The two-week summer camp, scheduled to take place around mid-July promises to be a wonderful opportunity for campers to expand their horizon and have a first-hand experience in one of the fastest growing economies in the world. For additional information about the upcoming 2015 program, contact Lin Zhang at or 901-678-2595.

Study in Argentina: Home of Tango, Gauchos, and the Andes Mountains By Jonathan Holland, Study Abroad Advisor With a blend of European, Latin, and indigenous traditions, one of the world’s most diverse geographies and emerging as a political and commercial center of South America, Argentina is an ideal location for students to study abroad for almost any major. Over the nineteenth and twentieth centuries many of the most renowned architects from Spain, Italy, and France have made their mark in the capital city, Buenos Aires, also known as the “Paris of South America.” Within the expansive borders of Argentina you will find almost any landscape imaginable. Located in the Andes Mountain range you will find Aconcagua, the highest mountain in the western and southern hemispheres. The northern and central plains are home to the Gauchos, modern day cowboys raising some of the world’s best quality beef. To the south you will find the breathtaking mountains of Patagonia, featuring some of the best skiing and mountain climbing locations in the world, which overlook numerous glaciers and glacial lakes. With a more reliable infrastructure compared to many of its South American neighbors, it is easy to travel much of the country. The University of Memphis (U of M) offers study abroad options for students looking for a comprehensive immersion experience (in a variety of majors) in Buenos Aires, Cordoba, Mendoza, and Santé Fe. As a member of the International Student Exchange Program (ISEP), U of M students may apply to study at any of the following ISEP member schools: Universidad Blas Pascal, Universidad Católica de Córdoba, Universidad de Palermo, and Universidad del Salvador. The cost of participating in an ISEP exchange program is affordable as it is similar to the cost of attendance at U of M. Students with limited knowledge of Spanish may take classes offered in English through other U of M affiliate programs. For those who prefer a short-term program there are program options offered during the summer

Clarissa Bossler in Buenos Aires. Not only do all of these programs include language study and classes in a variety of subjects, they include field trips and cultural activities unique to Argentina. U of M International Business major, Clarisa Bossler, participated in the CEA in Buenos Aires program during the fall 2013 semester. Clarisa enrolled in courses taught in English such as international marketing, entrepreneurship, and the culture of food and wine in Argentina. These courses offered activities outside the classroom in which students got to interact with local entrepreneurs, artists, historians, growers of wine, and many others. According to Clarisa, students on her program were treated to a performance at the Teatro Colón opera house, which is considered one of the best five concert venues in the world and a visit to La Casa Rosada, the executive mansion and office of the President of Argentina. Asked what the highlight of her Argentine experience was, Clarisa declared that it was the opportunity to visit Iguazu Falls and “living with other college students from around the United States and the world.”


University of Memphis Celebrates Tigers Abroad Photo Contest Congratulations to the following winners of the 2014 Tigers Abroad Photo Contest: U of M Students who Have Studied Abroad

1st Place

2nd Place

3rd Place





By Lori Lester

by Merrileigh Rutherford

by Monique Savage

U of M International Students

1st Place RE-UNION WITH FRIENDS AT MY HOME TOWN by Adhikari Hitesh

2nd Place CHRISTMAS AWAY FROM HOME by Alka Singh

[People’s Choice Award Winner]

U of M Alumni

1st Place

2nd Place

3rd Place




By Gian Gozum

By Joanna Darden

By Liu Mei

[People’s Choice Award Winner]

The Tigers Abroad photo contest was held in recognition of International Education Week November 17-21, 2014. University of Memphis students who studied abroad, U of M International Students, and U of M Alumni who have had a recent international experience all submitted entries. The theme of the 2014 contest was “Engaging with the Host Community & Culture”. Entries were on display at the Ned R. McWherter Library rotunda during International Education Week. The photos were also on display at the City of Memphis Downtown Development Office from December 8, 2014 through January 9, 2015 and will be at White Station High School on February 2, 2015.


International Education Week International Education Week is an opportunity to celebrate the benefits of international education and exchange worldwide. This joint initiative is between the U.S. Department of State, the U.S. Department of Education, and institutions of higher education nationwide in an effort to promote programs that prepare Americans for a global environment and attract future leaders from abroad to study, learn, and exchange experiences in the United States. Learn more at

The Global Race By Carissa Hoitenga, Study Abroad Advisor The final event of U of M’s International Education Week was the Global Race. Similar to the TV show The Amazing Race, students worked in teams to solve clues that would take them to various places all over campus. At each location, students were required to complete an internationalthemed challenge or trivia question in order to get the next clue. Teams who finished first, second, and third place were all awarded study abroad vouchers that can be used towards the cost of studying abroad. Students formed teams of two or three students, donned study abroad t-shirts of the same color, and joined the race. Students formed teams through both personal and campus connections. On the winning team, Kimberly Boone and her husband, Landon Boone, teamed up with classmate and fellow Student Dietetics Association member Kristen Chambers. The three team members all plan to study nutrition in South Africa this summer. For Kimberly, the thought of winning the race and working as a team motivated her to try her best and enjoy the experience. “Even when I wanted to slow down the pace, my team members and I just shouted, ‘Five Hundred Dollars!!!’ over and over again. We all encouraged each other to keep going and move fast! At one point, my husband was carrying me over his shoulder (I am not the best runner)!” Instead of running the race, some study abroad alumni volunteered to manage the challenge sites across campus. Participants who came to the sites were given challenges which included eating stuffed grape leaves, matching foreign currency to its respective country, identifying foreign artists’ and composers’ home countries, and answering trivia questions that identified several international sites. Students who participated in the race were treated to a pizza party and a screening of the various photo entries from the Study Abroad Photo Contest. Ashley Gagnon, whose team placed 2nd in the Global Race and who will be studying abroad in Australia during the spring 2015 semester, enjoyed the event and thinks the “Global Race is such an interesting activity because it brings forth a great amount of cultural awareness, and it is also a great reminder that the world is so much bigger than just where we live and what we know.” If you are interested in participating in the next Global Race contact the study abroad office at or check out our webiste at for upcoming events.


Southern Hospitality The beginning of the fall semester was a hectic one for the Study Abroad Office. In addition to welcoming our international exchange students, we had the pleasure of hosting two groups of visiting students from Meiji University in Japan and Coventry University in the UK. The Meiji University group visited our campus from August 4th to the 15th. The group which was made up of students from Meiji University’s School of Information and Communication was led by Communications Professor, Mistuyasu Oda. While at Memphis, the group attended lectures that focused on U.S. Popular Culture and Civil Rights. The lectures were supplemented with site visits to the Civil Rights museum, the Bill Clinton Presidential Library, and Elvis Presley’s Graceland among others. U of M student volunteers served as buddies to the Meiji students. To conclude the program, a farewell reception was held at the Communication Building Atrium where U of M students, John Perales and Billy Neal gave a musical performance in Japanese.

Meiji Group

The Coventry group visited our campus from September 7th to the 17th. The group consisted of fifteen students enrolled in Coventry University’s Global Leader’s Program. In addition to guest lectures by U of M faculty that focused on global business the participants toured local businesses such as Service Master, Smith and Nephew as well as the Cotton Exchange.

Homecoming Parade 2014 International Students at the U of M participated in the 2014 homecoming parade carrying flags of their home countries.

(Cont’d from front page 1) Choosing Costa Rica was probably my best decision in deciding how to pursue my study abroad dream. Costa Rica was beautiful no matter where I went, the people were unbelievably gracious and friendly, and most of all there were so many things to do that I did not feel like five weeks was long enough once it was over. No matter if I was in the mountains, beach, downtown San Jose or the rainforest I was in constant awe of my surroundings. I have hundreds of strictly landscape pictures that do not even come close to capturing the pure beauty of the country. My only regret of the whole experience was not taking a better camera. As I enter the real world, I hope to become a physician’s assistant and join the medical field. In order to enter that world I have to find a way to show that I am different than the other thousands of applicants that all take the same classes I am in. Being a biology major in my junior year, I am currently enrolled in a genetics, biochemistry and Spanish class, amongst others that I need. However, what I am hoping sets me apart from the crowd is my study abroad experience. By studying abroad, I not only show that I can adapt to new environments but I also have the knowledge of what I learned while abroad. Studying in Costa Rica was much more than simply learning


medical Spanish and health psychology, it was a way to grow as a person. I have grown to know and love another culture which in turn will help me adapt to my patients, being able to help them in a way that any other doctor who has solely taken classes at their home university wouldn’t be able to. The US may be my true home, but knowing that second culture has truly opened my eyes to being more accepting of others and finding new ways to look at the world. Being a STEM major I never thought I would be able to study abroad, but stumbling upon the fair was a blessing in disguise. It opened my eyes to a whole world that was waiting to be explored and helped me get one step closer to my goals. Many STEM majors are looking to go to some type of graduate school, and by studying abroad your application stands apart from the others. Ultimately, whatever will help me achieve my goals I will do, and studying abroad has been one of the best decisions of my life!

Faculty Spotlight A Conversation with David Horan, Instructor of Digital Photography for the U of M’s Department of Art

Please tell us about yourself and your position at the University of Memphis (U of M). In September, I will be starting my 28th year with the Art Department here at the U of M, where I teach photography and art history. It is a very diverse department with concentrations in Studio Art, Photography, Graphic Design, Art Education, Art History, and Egyptology, offering both undergraduate and graduate degrees. Our students bring a wide range of interests and talents to the department, which naturally keeps us faculty members on our toes. I draw a lot of inspiration and energy from my students and try to return that energy in the classroom. Art is an international language, and as such, we place strong emphasis on multicultural perspectives in all the disciplines we teach. What is your role in study abroad here at the U of M? Since 2010, I have been teaching a digital photography course in Florence,

David Horan with U of M Students at Photo Exhibit Opening in Florence, Italy

integrate Renaissance art and architecture with contemporary digital imaging

How has your career afforded you the opportunity to travel abroad? As an artist, exploring the world is my greatest resource. In 1986, I received

technology. With Florence being the cradle of the Renaissance, the students

a grant from the Carter Foundation in Atlanta, and the Sasakawa Foundation

are surrounded by inspiration every day both in the museums and in daily

in Tokyo, to travel to Japan and South Korea to photograph the culture. Since

Florentine life. Also, during the Spring of 2014, I taught an Honors Forum

then, I have been returning regularly to Japan where I photograph Buddhist

class on the Art and Architecture of the Renaissance, which included a Spring

Temples, Shinto Shrines, and Peace Parks. In 1994, I began a collaborative

Break trip to Rome, Florence and Pisa. It was an intense introduction to Italy

partnership with Petr Lysacek, an artist from the Czech Republic. He and I

for the fifteen students in the class. But it was a very rich experience for

have created several installations throughout Europe. My artistic interests

them, as well.

have taken me to almost every country in Eastern and Western Europe, as

Italy, hosted at Florence University of the Arts. The curriculum is designed to

well as much of Asia. I immerse myself in the various cultural experiences Please tell us about your first experience with study abroad. I had been taking small groups of art students abroad to visit museums and

and allow them to inform the art I make, and to enhance the experiences I create for my students here at the U of M.

exhibitions for about 12 years. In the Fall of 2009, Rebecca Laumann asked if I would be interested in creating a photography course specifically for

Do you feel a study abroad experience is important for students at

the Study Abroad program. She had secured an association with Florence University of the Arts and felt that it would be an ideal place to initiate an

the U of M? I absolutely believe that every student, either in high school, or university (or

art program. In the summer of 2010, I took a class comprised of three

both) should study abroad. The experience they gain will change the course

undergraduate and two graduate students. Not only did we conduct our

of their lives. Experiencing life in another culture, as opposed to merely

class in Florence, but also in Pisa and Venice. The program has expanded

passing through as a tourist, enriches one’s world view. Aside from the

since then to include one additional week of cultural introduction to Italy

excitement of studying in a classroom in another country, the students gain

during which, the students are able to visit Rome, Viareggio, Massa Carrara,

such valuable lessons in life outside the classroom. They meet new friends,

Pietrasanta and other towns in Tuscany before arriving in Florence for the bulk

eat new foods, and learn new practices and languages. It expands their

of the program.

understanding of the world, and their personal relationship to it.


make a gift today! ___Yes, I want to join other alumni and friends in making a gift in support of the Study Abroad program. Enclosed is my gift in the amount of $_________made payable to the University of Memphis Foundation (with the specification that it be in support of the Study Abroad program).

Name: ____________________________________ Degree/Year (if applicable) _____________ Address: _______________________________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________________________________ E-mail: _________________________________________________________________________ Phone Number: _________________________________________________________________

To give by credit card or automatic draft, please visit Consider our Matching Gift Program to double, or even triple, the size of the gift through your company’s matching gift program. Some companies will match the charitable donations of retirees and, in some cases, gifts by an employee’s spouse. The human resources department of your company can supply you with appropriate information and forms, which should be returned along with your gift.

☐ Check is enclosed (made payable to the University of Memphis Foundation) ☐ Bill to my credit card ☐ Visa ☐ MasterCard ☐ American Express ☐ Discover Card number: _____________________________ Expiration Date: ___________________________ Signature: (Required) _______________________________________________ Please return this form to: Department 238 • The U of M Foundation • P.O. Box 1000 • Memphis, TN 38148-0001. To make a gift by phone: call 901.678.3953.

Thank you for making an important investment in the University of Memphis!

A bi g a i l

Life as an Exchange Student at the U of M By Abigail Agyei Coventry University, United Kingdom I knew that I wanted to study abroad in the United States of America in my first year at Coventry University. When the opportunity came up, I was given a list of different U.S. universities to choose from. I knew the University of Memphis (U of M) was for me. Apart from the great food, weather and music, I felt Memphis would have great people as well as an enjoyable atmosphere. Studying abroad has been a challenge I have loved so far. I have felt very welcome as an exchange student at the U of M. I have met and made some amazing friends with international and American students. The opportunities provided by the U of M such as volunteer opportunities and student involvement have been abundant. Since being on campus, I have been involved in several student organizations such as the African Student Association (ASA), Setting the Standard (STS) and have attended various seminars and talks on campus. My experience at the U of M has exceeded my expectations of student life at an American university. I am glad I chose to live on campus at the U of M. My apartment was so close to my classes, and learning facilities such as the library, the recreation centre and food court. Even though I did not have a car my friends were always willing to take me grocery shopping as well as on tours around the city. Even if I could not get a ride the University’s ‘Blue line’ bus was always there to the rescue.

Attending U of M football and basketball games was an interesting and fun experience. Collegiate sport in the UK is very different from America. The atmosphere at these events was incredible and is among my greatest memories as a student at the U of M. I got caught up in school spirit and found myself singing “I’m so glad I go to the U of M, I’m so glad I go to the U of M, I’m so glad I go to the U of M, singing glory hallelujah, wooh, I’m so glad.” Studying at the U of M gave me the opportunity to pick unique classes beneficial to my career path as well as my undergraduate degree. I enrolled in Sociology of Religion, Racial Ethnic Minorities, Introduction to Criminal Justice and a Sociology of Deviant Behaviour course. Although the structure of the classes were different from what I was used to, all of professors were great. They truly cared about the well-being of their students, which was amazing. The U of M Study Abroad team was helpful and made me feel a part of the student body. They kept in touch with me to make sure I was settled and checked up on how my classes were going which was very encouraging. I have not only been in Memphis this fall semester. I have visited Mississippi and will be at Virginia for the winter holidays. It has been a fantastic experience so far and I know there is a lot more to come which I am looking forward to in the Spring!

STUDY ABROAD PROGRAM 102 Brister Hall Memphis, TN 38152 901.678.2814 /studyabroadmemphis @memphisabroad

U of M Students Awarded External Scholarships for Study Abroad for Spring 2015! Briona Jackson of West Memphis, Arkansas has been awarded the Benjamin A. Gilman Scholarship for study abroad and the Alliance for Global Education Scholarship; she will be studying international business in Shanghai, China. Briona is majoring in international business and Asian studies for international trade, and it is her goal to one day work as a corporate sustainability officer. Jessie Claudio of Santa Ana, California has been awarded the Benjamin A. Gilman Scholarship and will be studying at Fundação Armando Alvares Penteado in São Paulo, Brazil. Jessie is an International Studies and Foreign Languages major. He hopes to work for a multi-national corporation in maintaining relationships and business opportunities in Latin America or for a NGO that focuses on education, human rights, or economic development. Billy Neal of Memphis, Tennessee has been awarded the Benjamin A. Gilman Scholarship for study abroad and will be studying at Meiji University in Tokyo, Japan. As a Foreign Language major with concentrations in Japanese and French, Billy hopes to one day work as a translator and interpreter.

Courtney Bailey of Marion, Arkansas has been awarded the CEA Global Career Scholarship and will be studying Chinese language and culture in Shanghai, China. As an English and Foreign Language major with concentrations in English as a Second Language and Chinese, Courtney hopes to one day become a teacher.

Alumni News

Did You know? Students who study abroad have a higher retention rate than their peers!

John Vincent Burrell’s (Osaka University, Japan, Fall 2013) artwork was featured in a solo exhibit, “BigManJapan” at the Box Gallery, Arts and Communication Building from December 1-19, 2014. “Burrell’s work deals with the subjects of discrimination, identity, culture, and loneliness. The conceptual basis of this show began when Burrell studied in Osaka, Japan. There, he was confronted by more than just the average culture shock but by blatant ostracism due to his size and skin color. During this challenging experience, John was able to harness the emotional power of hurt, confusion, and rejection by channeling them into his love of art. Thus, manifesting his pain into an exhibition that we hope will generate discussion on culture and race.”

The University of Memphis, a Tennessee Board of Regents institution, is an Equal Opportunity/ Affirmative Action University. It is committed to education of a non-racially identifiable student body. UOM383-FY1415/1C PEERLESS PRINTING

STUDY ABROAD PROGRAM 102 Brister Hall Memphis, TN 38152 901.678.2814 /studyabroadmemphis @memphisabroad

Study Abroad : Spring 2015 newsletter  

The Spring 2015 newsletter of the Study Abroad program at the University of Memphis

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