Members of BAAAU joined other alumni, faculty, staff, and donors in Grey Towers Castle on February 15 to give a hearty send-off to Arcadia students who are recipients of BAAAU’s ‘Preview Travel Support Fund.’ Preview is a two-credit course and weeklong international experience for first-year and transfer students, which since 1994, has encouraged nearly 8,000 students to study in international destinations across the globe.
Arcadia has long been recognized as a leader in study-abroad, with more than 75 percent of students participating in international travel and study abroad during their time at the University.
BAAAU began awarding the Preview Support Fund in 2019 when it was recognized that Black students were less likely to study abroad. This year, the Support Fund was awarded to six Black Arcadia students and covers the costs of the program and provides a travel stipend.
Karen Oliver '11, Chair of BAAAU’s Travel Committee, addressed the students at the send off, offering tips on experiencing other cultures based on her own travels around the world. “I went to India for my career, and it was an experience that took me outside of my comfort zone. And I’m so glad that it did.”
Student-travelers who attended the event are to visit London, Brussels, and Seoul, respectively. While visiting their destination they will be focusing on specific elements of interest to them, like music, fashion, and the effects of colonialism.
Students were encouraged to share why they chose their respective destinations. First-year student, India, told the group, “I’m going to London to compare the music scene in that city to the music scene in Philadelphia.” Another first-year student, Shawn, is heading off to Brussels. “I’m going to take a look at colonial influences present in Belgium today,” he said.
Second-year student, Zion, said she chose Seoul, South Korea because of its distance from home. “I chose Korea because it scared me the most. Arcadia is 15 minutes from my home. South Korea is so very far away.”
Brigette A. Bryant, Vice President of Development and Alumni Engagement, thanked the donors for supporting the Preview Travel Support Fund, and told the students to, “Soak it all in and be open. There is much to see and much to learn. Come back with new perspectives on the world around you.”
BAAAU’s Karen Oliver '11 echoed those sentiments, and ended by telling the students, “When you return, we look forward to you sharing with us all that you experienced in your journey.”
If you studied abroad while at Arcadia, please share your memories and photos at email@example.com.
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