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Most continents open to ASU students choosing to study abroad, program among best in the nation

Deadline to apply is approaching quickly

Staff Writer

Published: Friday, November 2, 2012

Updated: Thursday, November 1, 2012 17:11

     Attention, aspiring world travelers!

     The last day to apply for one of the nine study abroad trips next summer has been moved to Saturday, Dec. 1, and students are encouraged to apply early because spots are limited.

     “We have already received around 150 applications for the study abroad trips thus far,” International Business Professor Sharynn Tomlin said. “Many of the programs are actually nearing capacity now, but there are still a lot of programs with a lot of room for students.”

     All of the programs vary in size, but average at 20 to 22 students, Tomlin said.

     According to the Study Abroad Programs handout, students can travel to every continent besides South America and Antarctica.

     The trips and their focus of study include: London, Edinburgh and Dublin with a focus on International Business and Political Policy Issues; England, France, Czech Republic and Germany with a focus on Biology; Bulgaria, Greece, Italy and Spain with a focus on International Management and Logistics Issues; Austria, Czech Republic and Poland with a focus on Management; China with a focus on Art; China with a focus on Education; France, Germany and Belgium with a focus on the European Union and European Culture; Malawi with a focus on Nursing; South Korea with a focus on Criminal Justice; and Spain with a focus on Spanish.   

     “With the exception of the programs traveling to Malawi and South Korea, all of the programs are open to any major,” Professor Sharynn Tomlin said. “Anyone can take those courses. Last summer, I had Biology, Biochemistry, English and History majors—a little bit all over.”

     Junior Suzanna Tolboom traveled to Spain last summer with the study abroad program. She said her favorite part of the trip was how the Spanish culture was slower-paced than American culture.

“They have a set time every day for nap time – from 2 to 5,” Tolboom said. “Everyone goes home and takes a nap. If you are 20 minutes late, they don’t care.”

     Students should travel abroad “to learn new cultures,” Tolboom said.

     “Studying abroad gives students a new experience, makes students more mature and makes students appreciate the United States,” Tolboom said.

     If there is not a program offered in a student’s specific major, he or she is encouraged to pick a region that he or she has always wanted to see, Tomlin said.

     “If you have always wanted to go to London, use this as an opportunity to go,” Tomlin said. “The course will at lease count as an upper-level elective.”

     Applying is almost too easy, Tomlin said.  To apply, students log on to Ram Port, click on the Student Services tab, click Rams Logon, and then click the Study Abroad link.

     “It’s so easy, it’s ridiculous,” Tomlin said. “We have been trying to think of ways to make it harder.”

Students who are interested must meet the following criteria: they must have a 2.75 cumulative GPA; they must have completed two semesters at ASU and they must have completed 30 hours. Transfer students can apply if they have transferred in at least 39 hours, according to the 2013 Study Abroad pamphlet.

     “Studying abroad shows that you have confidence, creativity, and curiosity,” Tomlin said. “Studying abroad says a lot for you on your resume.”

     The summer program counts for six hours of advanced credit. For basic information about each trip, students can go to the Center for International Studies home page at

Every student accepted into the study abroad program receives a scholarship. Other financial aid, like the Carr scholarship, also helps with the cost, according to Tomlin.

     “The world as we know it is getting smaller in the sense that we are much more connected with each other,” Tomlin said. “Understanding globalization is really critical and that is what study abroad does. It opens your mind up to different ways of doing things.”

     Traveling abroad has a profound impact on students’ lives, Tomlin said.

     “They become so mature and so much more comfortable with themselves and confident when they have participated in the study abroad program. I have whole families who I have taken over the years through the study abroad program.”

     In 2010, ASU won an international award for having an innovative study abroad program, Tomlin said.

     “We are always wondering here at ASU, ‘What is our niche?’” Tomlin said. “In many ways it is our study abroad program. We are well known all over Texas for our study broad


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