in far-flung locations.
“There is no question that this is a study
abroad business, and some of these providers
have major advantages. SIT, for instance, has
been in Africa for 30 years,” Miles said.
Most who can afford study abroad say
the same thing: It was well worth the cost.
Brandy Davila, a senior exercise and
sports science and psychology major, studied
on an SIT program in Samoa in spring
2007. The program was expensive, although
Davila received a partial scholarship from
SIT and other financial aid. But the program
— which included trips to Hawaii and Fiji,
a stay in a Samoan home, and an independent research project — lived up to what it
For her independent research, Davila,
who played on the UNC women’s rugby
team, interviewed rugby players for a paper
on rugby in Samoan society. She said that
research experience made her change her
major from biology to exercise and sports
science when she returned to Chapel Hill.
“The research was something I never
would have been able to do anywhere else.
It gave me an opportunity to do something
I’m not qualified for yet in the U.S., but
over there, I could meet so many players. In
the states, you would have had to have had
Digital delivery has arrived
Read the Carolina Alumni Review online, as it appears in print.
• Search archives and read past issues
• Find articles you seek using page thumbnails
• Share Carolina stories with other GAA members
• Find out more through deep links in each issue
GAA members will receive notification by e-mail and a link to a user-friendly
Web site for immediate access to their interactive issue, complete with
hotlinks to all URLs and e-mail addresses.
GENERAL ALUMNI ASSOCIATION
Expanding the opportunity
However tempting or potentially beneficial, many students still see study abroad as
“Many students don’t even consider
study abroad given the fact that they already
face financial difficulties,” said Joseph Jordan,
director of the Sonja Haynes Stone Center
for Black Culture and History.
Because many chose not to respond to
the “ethnicity” part of a study abroad survey,
it is hard to determine the number of
minority students who have studied abroad,
but setting aside those nonresponses, about
18 percent of the students who studied
abroad in 2007-08 identified themselves as
nonwhite. The nonwhite population of
UNC undergraduates is about 27 percent.
Jordan said that financial need, inflexible
academic schedules and the fact that few
people in their families have traveled internationally often combine to make study abroad
nonviable for many minority students.
The Stone Center offers workshops and
meetings throughout the year to inform stu-