Study Abroad Fair showcases a different Biola experience

Booths filled with information about various locations allowed students to explore new opportunities during the Study Abroad Fair.


Photo by Thecla Li / THE CHIMES

Macie Cummings, News Editor

The study abroad fair took to Sutherland Way by the fountain on Sept. 13, providing information and resources to students interested in taking a semester abroad.

Senior sociology major Elena Jones studied abroad in Ecuador last spring. This program is offered both fall and spring semesters, according to the program site, allowing students to witness the realities of poverty and injustice in Quito, Ecuador, according to the program site.

“It was definitely worth it because the experience you get [is] so unique in that you get so close to the people in your group and to the professors,” Jones said. “One of my professors emailed me this week and said how much he missed us… It’s worth it, and you have the rest of your semesters at Biola.”

She believes that through the program students have the opportunity to step outside of their comfort zone and experience the world in a new light, all while working towards their degree.

“You learn a lot about things outside of our little bubble of Biola, our little world that we have here,” said associate director of Study Abroad Advising and Programing Nick Jeschke.  “A lot of cultural engagement and cultural humility is something I see students develop, and they come back transformed. They see things around them in a different light, and they engage differently.”

The event lasted from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., allowing students the time to ask questions and find out if any of the programs could be right for them. There were booths representing different locations around the world, as well as a central information booth to get an overall picture of the program.

Biola Study Abroad and Study USA currently consists of over 20 locations, and they are always looking to add more, with the newest addition to the program being Northern Ireland. This program allows students to complete much of their general education requirements and is offered during the spring semester.

“Biola will be here when they come back,” said Jeschke. “You can’t have the experience abroad here. You can’t go to the Middle East here. You can’t have that same cross-cultural engagement inside the classroom.”

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