Students at BYU-Idaho will no longer have as many opportunities to participate in study abroad programs due to changes to the program module.
The university has asked the faculty members in charge of study abroad programs to conduct their tours during the summer. In the past, these tours were offered during regular semesters.
The change has resulted in certain departments canceling their study abroad programs altogether, as the faculty in charge would have to take their personal time in the summer to organize and conduct these tours.
“It’s harder from a faculty perspective to sustain these programs under the current circumstances, and I think other departments have just decided that it’s not sustainable for faculty to sacrifice so much of their summer-time to keep these experiences going,” said Dan Pearce, a faculty member of the study abroad program for the English department and the associate dean of curriculum of the College of Language and Letters.
The Department of Religious Education is one of the departments which has decided to cancel their study abroad program. However, there are still some study abroad programs offered here.
“We still have a tour that’s running for the English Department,” Pearce said. “We didn’t run it this year, but it will be running this coming summer of 2018. Our study abroad tour will be more sporadically kept going depending on the faculty’s ability to take the time off in summer to maintain it.”
The tour for the English Department travels to London, England to attend theatre, music, art events and lectures.
While there are not as many study abroad programs offered at BYU-I, students can still take advantage of other programs, such as the BYU Kennedy Center, which are available to BYU-I students. The BYU Kennedy Center has over 1,500 students study abroad each year from BYU alone. They offer a wide variety of programs to students.
“I was interested in doing a study abroad program at BYU-I, but when I heard that some of them were canceled, I was a little bummed,” said Kambry Hansen, a freshman studying nursing. “I looked at BYU’s Kennedy Center as a backup and found that they offered a lot more programs that aren’t offered here at BYU-I.”
Hansen said she plans to study abroad in Africa for a nursing program next fall.
“It’s a little disappointing that it has become harder and harder to give those people these opportunities at a reasonable price,” Pearce said. “When the tours were given during the semester there was never a time where it wasn’t filled. The interest is definitely out there.”