Delaware County Community College, Serving Delaware and Chester Counties

College Expands Study Abroad Opportunities for Students

Study Abroad Group Photo(Delaware and Chester Counties, PA • May 11, 2018)—Delaware County Community College is continuing to expand its study abroad opportunities for students, allowing them to gain a global perspective before they transfer to a four-year school.

Last year, seven students ventured overseas for educational opportunities, while 15 participated this year. The goal is to continue to increase offerings and partnerships to help more students take advantage of this unique, eye-opening learning opportunity. Currently, the College has study abroad partnerships with The American Business School of Paris, Arcadia University, Bloomsburg University and Widener University and also assists students in applying for other opportunities, including the Fulbright program and Gilman Scholarship.

As part of an effort to streamline and expand these study abroad offerings at the community college level, administrators and faculty recently held a conversation on study abroad with students.  “The conversation allowed previous study abroad students to share their insights and advice with those set to begin their experience this summer,” says Dr. Sabuur Abdul-Kareem, Director of International Programs and Partnerships. “The conversation helped set expectations and put those new to study abroad at ease. Both groups of students enjoyed and appreciated the opportunity.”

Students who participated in last year’s partnership with Widener University, a program that sent them to China for four weeks, shared insights on everything from traffic and ATMs to food and haggling for souvenirs. They also all expressed how the experience changed their lives and that they wish they could do it again.

“It was probably the best time I had in my life,” says Montrose Jennings, who participated in the program last year and is now a Business major at West Chester University. He adds that he enjoyed studying in China so much that he wished that he could have stayed longer and used up the remaining 30 days on his visa.

In addition to three students who are participating in the Widener China Academic Exchange Program this year, students also journeyed to, or are set to go to, Ireland, Kazakhstan, Italy, Morocco and New Zealand. Plus, John Boncek, Assistant Professor of Mathematics, will spend five weeks in China this summer studying Chinese.

Fayyatha Alatharee, a Surgical Technology major, who is headed to Morocco through a partnership with Bloomsburg University, hopes to learn other languages and cultures so she can one day serve with Nurses or Doctors Without Borders. Meanwhile, Network Engineering major Patrick Hee, who will take his first ever plane ride to journey to New Zealand, is excited to learn about the country’s technology and see how it compares to the U.S.

“All of these opportunities provide our students with a way to learn about the world, other cultures and also about themselves,” says Dr. Abdul-Kareem. “Our goal is to help more students participate in a study abroad experience so they too can enjoy these benefits.”

To learn more about the College’s international programs and partnerships, contact Dr. Abdul-Kareem at 610-355-7143.

Photo Caption: First row, left to right: Leticia Guerra (China, spring 2018); Odessa Clarke (China, spring 2018); Dr. L. Joy Gates Black, President; Leah Wright (Ireland, spring 2018); and Fayyatha Alatharee (Morocco, summer 2018). Second row, left to right: Assistant Professor John Boncek (China, summer 2018); Montrose Jennings (China, spring 2017; Jack Kearney (China, spring 2017 and Costa Rica, fall 2017); Assistant Professor Dr. Francesco Bellini (China, spring 2017 & 2018); and Dr. Sabuur Abdul-Kareem, Director, International Programs and Partnerships.

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