As worldwide travel was placed on maintain due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the UNL Education Abroad workplace had to discover methods to provide alternatives to college students with out really sending them away from UNL.
Cody Hollist, the interim director of Education Abroad, stated it was an advanced course of for examine overseas when COVID-19 was first turning into a rising risk to UNL in early March 2020.
“The first task was to bring everybody home,” Hollist stated.
After all that, Hollist stated, the subsequent step was cancelling packages for the summer season and fall 2020 semesters and reconstructing examine overseas for a web based setting.
Once college students returned to campus in fall 2020, the objective was to discover modern methods to foster world experiences whereas in a pandemic, he stated.
Hollist stated the college was already taking a look at methods to shift fascinated about world engagement away from conventional touring of scholars to overseas places as a result of it’s not at all times real looking for college kids to give you the option to try this even earlier than the pandemic, due to prices and different elements that would forestall college students leaving the states.
He stated the COVID-19 pandemic provided them a chance to actually consider what training overseas is.
“It was an opportunity, born out of crisis, to figure out what do we really mean by global experiences and what are the different ways we can achieve that?” Hollist stated.
Hollist stated they went to college for concepts and supported them in creating methods of educating and coaching college students in world citizenship.
That included digital programs and even partnering with native communities, Hollist stated.
“One program had virtual host families, and so students were paired with families in Brazil,” he stated. “They did activities with their family in Brazil and students talked about how connected they felt to their virtual host families.”
Hollist stated the pandemic made individuals understand that digital connections can have a robust influence and that doing overseas packages over Zoom may be very potential.
But even with the technological capabilities out there, learning overseas in individual is turning into extra potential.
Kelsey Eihausen, a senior broadcasting main and pupil employee within the Education Abroad workplace, studied overseas this previous summer season in Seoul, South Korea, for six weeks, two of which have been spent in quarantine.
Eihausen stated she deliberate to go overseas in the summertime of 2020 to Sydney however ended up selecting Seoul due to Australia nonetheless not permitting training overseas in the summertime of 2021.
This was the primary time Eihausen had been out of the United States, however she stated that although she was hundreds of miles away, it actually didn’t really feel that far.
“That was something that really shocked me, that I could feel at home somewhere that was so far away and so different than where I am from,” she stated.
Hollist stated he needs any pupil excited about going overseas to come and go to their workplaces and get assist as a result of the method could also be overwhelming.
Eihausen additionally encourages college students, who do have the means to achieve this, to examine overseas. Financial assets can be found by the college and packages to assist with funding, she stated.
“It’s a good opportunity to get out of your normal environment and kind of experience different things,” she stated.