Josh Carter has directed of the Office of Study Away since 2003, and the program has grown considerably under his leadership.
UAB offers more than 100 programs in more than 50 international locations in the areas of language, arts, nursing, business, social sciences, engineering and natural sciences. More than 150 UAB undergraduate students studied outside the United States this past year.
|The Office of Study Away is flourishing under the leadership of Josh Carter. UAB offers more than 100 programs in more than 50 international locations. More than 150 UAB undergraduate students studied outside the United States this past year.
Carter recently was named the recipient of the International Award of Excellence from the NAFSA Association of Inter-national Educators for Region VII. The prize is given annually to the individual who exhibits outstanding leadership, locally or regionally, in international education exchange. He will receive the award Oct. 26 in Columbia, S.C., during the NAFSA Region VII conference.
Carter recently spoke to the UAB Reporter about his award, the Study Away program and its future.
Q. Why were you selected for the international award and what does that mean for the Office of Study Away?
A. All I can say is that I am apparently fortunate enough to have a number of enthusiastic supporters who believe in what we’re doing at UAB and who recommended me for this award. I have a passion for international education and for the free exchange of ideas across cultures. This passion has led me to several leadership opportunities both in the state and region. I just hope that what we do helps our students to more fully understand their place in the world and that global change can truly begin with a single person who has the ability to cross cultural boundaries and learn from those who are different from them.
Q. Why is the office now called Study Away instead of Study Abroad?
A. As of 2007 we became the Office for Study Away when we added a variety of domestic exchange opportunities to our already strong cadre of international exchange programs. The name Study Abroad was too limiting to define our growth into these other programs that include The National Student Exchange (NSE) and The Washington Center. The NSE program offers students the chance to spend a semester or year at any one of more than 190 U.S. or Canadian universities, and The Washington Center is a fantastic opportunity for students to earn academic credit while completing an internship linked to seminars taught by world-renowned social and political leaders.
Q. When should faculty and staff begin preparing for next summer’s programs?
A. For 2009 we are expecting to have a large number of programs in the Galapagos (Biology), in Bulgaria/Greece (Theatre History), in Japan (Japanese History), in Spain (Spanish and Psychology), in Fiji (Cultural Anthropology), in China (International Business), in Quebec (French), in Mexico (Ethnographic Studies) three programs in Italy (Educational Leadership, Italian, Counselor Education), and U.S. Historical Preservation in the Southeast, just to name a few. It is never too early to begin planning for the summer of 2010. Interested faculty should contact us at email@example.com to begin the planning process.
Q. If a faculty member is interested in starting a Study Away program or if a student asks what they should do to be considered for the program, where should they start?
A. Faculty interested in planning a program can contact us at any time – the earlier the better as it generally takes a year to bring a program to fruition. We can help faculty refine their academic and logistical goals. Students, on the other hand, can contact us at any time as well. We suggest they first do some research by perusing our Web site www.studyabroad.app.uab.edu, looking at www.studyabroad.com — a search engine of programs available outside of UAB — visiting www.nse.org, or visiting www.twc.edu. Once students have a fairly clear picture of their academic, financial and personal goals, then it’s a good time for them to set up an appointment with our office by calling 975-6611 or e-mailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
Q. Can faculty promote scholarships to students interested in Study Away programs?
A. Absolutely! UAB students who meet eligibility requirements for the program of their choice are able to apply for the Presidential Study Away Scholarship. In 2007-2008 we awarded more than $70,000 in scholarships that covered 20 percent of each recipient’s total Study Away costs. Also, there are a variety of nationally competitive scholarships to which our students can apply. More information is available at www.studyabroad.app.uab.edu/news.asp.
Q. What are your goals for the coming year?
A. We are always keeping our eyes on the UAB Scorecard. We have exceeded scorecard goals for the past four consecutive years. Our goal next year is to do so again by having more than 170 students participate. Additionally, we are encouraging more students to consider studying for a semester or longer because programs of a longer duration allow the students to more fully immerse themselves in the host culture. And, we are looking forward to unveiling more resources online such as faculty-leader orientations and student pre-departure and re-entry curricula.
Q. What events are planned to celebrate International Education Week Nov. 16-27 and where is more information available?
A. Look for a wide range of events. Our 2008 International Education Week Photo Contest just opened. Students, faculty and staff can submit their favorite photos at www.studyabroad.app.uab.edu/photo_contest.asp. Also, we have just released our 2009 IEW Photo Contest Calendar, the proceeds of which go toward raising money for scholarships for international education. During the month of November, look for more information on www.studyabroad.app.uab.edu to learn about events including foods from around the world that will be showcased at the Commons on the Green, the internationally related activities at the Recreation Center, student presentations of their experiences overseas and foreign films.