This summer, Greg Zwiers took part in ieiMedia’s Multimedia Journalism program in Urbino, Italy. (His story, “The Olive Oil Engineer,” was nominated for the 2013 Best Feature award.) Now back at Iowa State University, Greg is a contributor to the student-run news organization IowaStateDaily.com, where he wrote recently about studying abroad. We are re-posting the article, which appeared September 5, with permission of IowaStateDaily.com.
By Greg Zwiers, firstname.lastname@example.org
Students are gaining new experiences in study-abroad programs through Iowa State, whether it’s for a semester or just a few weeks.
“Students who have studied abroad typically are a bit more independent, better able to deal with uncertainty and more appreciative of other cultures,” said Trevor Nelson, director of the Study Abroad Center.
Nicholas Morton, senior in environmental science, studied in the Fiji Islands from July to December 2011. He took classes in geology, ocean law, Pacific history, and the Fijian language.
“I’ve gained a lot of new perspectives on the world, and I’ve gained a whole new way to deal with others,” Morton said.
Morton said he hopes he can use the things he learned to help with the environmental problems the country will face someday.
“Studying abroad offers a lot of classes and opportunities that students cannot get if they spend their four or five years in college on Iowa State’s campus,” said Luis Duckworth, senior in aerospace engineering.
Duckworth participated in a nine-day spring break program in Florence, Italy, in 2012. There he took introductory courses in Italian language, architecture, and art restoration.
Victoria Mita of FundMyTravel says it well: “I’m not rich but I studied abroad. So can you, if you really want to!”
In a post on The Traveling Advisor, Victoria sums up the various ways of finding cash to study abroad, from “old school” methods like bake sales and yard work to “new school” means like crowdfunding, as in FundMyTravel and ProjectTravel.
And, of course, there are scholarships. These three organizations offer complete lists of scholarships, grants, loans, and paid internships for students seeking to study in another country:
I’m proud to report that the multimedia website for our 2012 Urbino, Italy, program has been honored by the Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication. The association’s Newspaper and Online News division awarded the Urbino Project 2012 site second place in its annual competition.
The website was evaluated by journalism professors from the nation’s leading schools, and we are honored to have received this recognition. This is evidence that the work our students produced during their month in Italy is of a high standard. They have every right to be proud of the work they produced.
By the way, the 2013 multimedia site—just completed this summer by our latest crop of young reporters, photographers, videographers, and interactive content creators—is impressive, too. Follow the links below to enjoy the top-notch journalism on both sites:
The Institute for Education in International Media (ieiMedia) is offering communications faculty at accredited American colleges and universities Research Fellowships at its summer media programs in Italy, Israel, Turkey, France, Spain, China and Northern Ireland.
We have created the opportunities in response to many queries from comm faculty interested in investigating the techniques and effectiveness of experiential learning, boot camp teaching, short-term programs, and intercultural reporting. Accepted Research Fellows will receive a $3,000 grant toward the $4,995 cost of our programs and have access to all the amenities listed at their program site. Non-participating spouses are welcome at a cost of $1,200 for 4 weeks—but no children allowed. Fellows will pay their own airfare and insurance.
Research Fellows will have regular informal access to the program faculty for pedagogical and theoretical exchanges. In addition, they will participate in one or more of the program’s praxis modules and become a resource to faculty and students where appropriate.
To apply: Send a letter to me, Prof. Andrew Ciofalo, 4195 Tamiami Trail South #102, Venice FL 34293-5112. Explain your interest in this opportunity and how it might have an impact on your teaching or administrative role. If there is a particular research question you plan to address, please let us know. Include with the letter your vita, a letter of recommendation from your unit head, and a sample of or link to your writing, other work or research. We expect a written reflection at the end that you may also share with your department.
It is a hard responsibility to be a stranger;
to hear your speech sounding at odds with your neighbors
— John Hewitt
These words by Northern Irish Poet John Hewitt were this year’s theme for the John Hewitt international writer’s conference that takes place in Northern Ireland annually during the last week of July. The students and faculty of ieiMedia’s Armagh Project were invited to present our work – multimedia journalism pieces, plays, prose and poetry – to an audience of writers, educators, journalists and students from the UK and the Republic of Ireland. This welcome appeared in our program:
After living nearly a month in Armagh, I hear the place in my voice now. I hear my faculty saying “aye” and “tis” and turning the “th” sound into a full hard stop. Our students mirror the musical cadence of language in their plays and create stories with characters speaking melodies in the dialogue. The music of Northern Irish speech has become comfortable in our ears, just as the grey granite, rolling green hills and rainy days giving way to sunshine have become comfortable in our eyes. We stand out as “that American group” everywhere we go, and yet we have found our place in the community too. The ladies at the Basement Café know our latte orders by heart. The Bagel Bean across the way knows we always want take-away lunch. The technical staff in our classroom space at the AmmA Center know to hide when we come up the stairs. We are strangers, yet we are at home.
Throughout the course of our month-long residency, our student playwrights, journalists and creative writers have been asking themselves “what is home?” Is home the place we all came from, where our parents live and we go to school? Or is home the Armagh City Youth Hostel where we have built a community of writing and learning together in the last month? Is home the big hill we walk every day connecting us to a city and people at the heart of Northern Ireland? Is home in the stories we have heard or the stories we have created? Themes about being home, understanding home or leaving home fill the work of our students this year. This was not by design but certainly, the idea of “where do I belong” took hold in the collective unconscious of our group.
We are happy to share these stories of belonging and not belonging with you. Stories inspired by the people we have met, the city we have grown to love, and the Northern Ireland we are just now beginning to understand.
Reflecting back on those words now I see more clearly the long journey that our month-long stay cast upon us: from dinner with a former IRA Hunger Striker, to Belfast to walk the Peace Walls, to the Iron Age earthworks of Navan Fort, and to the natural wonder of the Giant’s Causeway. I remember the paradoxes we all learned to live with: a first edition of Gulliver’s Travels locked in a modest case in the local library not a three minute walk from our high-tech classroom space at the heart of the town; our 4th of July celebration in a pub in Belfast where local artists share poems and songs about their own search for identity and freedom; and the postcard-perfect green and peaceful hills that drew most of us to Ireland populated by people who shared stories of remembered sorrows.
These moments of dissonance punctuated our experiences and drove us inward, to ask ourselves questions about who we were in order to understand what we were experiencing. Unlike a tourist, we were not on a vacation of the beautiful but a journey of discovery. For the first time, I finally understood that leaving what was familiar was the only way that you could find home.
You can find the work of Armagh Project 2013 on our program blog.
Some 74 students and recent graduates from more than 50 universities in five countries will participate in ieiMedia programs this summer.
Students headed for the iPad magazine program in Urbino are busily packing their bags for a June 6 departure, while others bound for Armagh, Northern Ireland; Istanbul, Turkey; and Jerusalem, Israel still have a couple of weeks left for last-minute shopping, reading and information gathering.
Some tips for those planning to travel with ieiMedia this summer:
- Read up on your destination city and the surrounding region. Consume international newspapers, magazines, books, guides, even novels about the place you’ll be living for a month. The more you know about the community, the better you’ll be able to report.
- multimedia story on a snail farm in nearby Estoher. Come armed with story ideas. Do enough research that you have some idea of what you want to cover when you’re there. Your faculty and translators will have some suggestions but the best ideas, the ones you really want to report on, will spring from your own interests. One of our strongest students in Perpignan a few years ago came to France knowing she wanted to report on escargots; indeed, she put together a fine
- Pack lightly but bring a variety of summer-weight clothes. Remember to pack some casual business outfits (a dress, skirt or pantsuit for women; a nice shirt and slacks for men) for interviews and meetings with public officials, journalists and other professionals. Though it will be hot in many of our program sites, bring clothing that is modest and professional.
- Bring sensible footwear. All of our program sites are in historic cities with cobble-stone streets and hilly areas. Forget the stiletto heels. Bring shoes you can walk in!
- Carry a notebook and camera wherever you go. Even a casual conversation with a shopkeeper or resident could turn into an interview. Be prepared to take notes and shoot stills and video.
- Get contact info for follow-up interviews. Collect business cards or names, phone numbers and email addresses for every person you talk with. Everyone is a potential source. You never know when you may want to go back to someone for more information.
- Open your senses. Take a whiff of the air. Taste new foods. Try new experiences. Be open to what this new environment has to offer.
- BUT don’t leave your common sense at home. Young travelers can occasionally get themselves into trouble by not paying attention to the warning signs they would follow at home. When possible, travel in pairs or small groups. Don’t go off with strangers. Know where your wallet, passport and other valuables are at all times. Be wary and aware of your surroundings.
- Have a blast! ieiMedia programs are educational but they’re also fun. Many ieiMedia alumni describe their experiences with us as the summer of their lives. Take advantage of this unique opportunity to delve deep into a foreign community. Explore. Ask questions. Learn. Grow.
Bon voyage from all of us at ieiMedia!
Taylor Gilman, a journalism major and political science minor at the Denver university, was thrilled to learn about the scholarship from the Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship Program.
“Winning this scholarship is an opportunity for me to do something extraordinary,” Gilman, 19, said in an email interview. “Studying abroad is something that always seemed out of my reach, but now it’s finally happening.”
The Gilman Scholarship Program is open to American undergraduate students who are planning to study abroad. The program “aims to diversify the kinds of students who study abroad and the countries and regions where they go by supporting undergraduates who might otherwise not participate due to financial constraints,” according to the program’s website.
Gilman (no relation to the scholarship’s namesake) is originally from Glenwood Springs, Colo., and is an enrolled member of the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma.
“I chose the Istanbul project because I like how Turkey is a destination that not many students choose when studying abroad. I am also excited about the multimedia aspect of the program. I am very interested in photojournalism and the illumination of the human condition through photography. Even though I will only be in Istanbul for four weeks, I hope that I can shed at least a little light and truth on a culture so different from my own through images.”
Gilman is one of eight undergraduate students studying in ieiMedia’s international reporting program in Turkey this summer. Seven recent graduates and grad students will intern there with ieiMedia’s internship program.
“It’s a weird sensation how I feel,” Gilman said. “I have never been more excited or terrified in my entire life.”
Hey College Media Students,
Going to the Associated Collegiate Press convention in San Francisco this week? Come to our panel discussion on studying abroad!
Friday, March 1, 1:10-2:15 p.m. in the Stanford Room of the Westin San Francisco Market Street
Don’t Just See the World, Cover It!
Do you fantasize about becoming a foreign correspondent? Do you hope to study abroad? Find out about work and study-abroad opportunities for students interested in media and journalism. Learn how you can enhance your professional skills and put a global spin on your resume that will give you a competitive edge as you launch your career.
Dan Reimold, University of Tampa
Rachele Kanigel, ieiMedia
We’ll also be at the College Media Association Spring Convention in New York City March 9-12.
If you’re planning to be at either convention and want to talk with ieiMedia Executive Director Rachele Kanigel, fill out our Contact Form and we’ll set a time to meet up.
Our students have come from nearly 100 colleges and universities in the U.S., Canada, Australia, Singapore and Turkey.
They represent small private colleges and large public universities, religious schools and historically black colleges, urban schools and rural schools, four-year universities, graduate schools and community colleges.
See if you can find your school on our map.
View Where do ieiMedia Students Come From? in a full screen map
ieiMedia is hitting the road! Students, faculty and college media advisers who want to learn more about our programs, teaching opportunities and academic partnerships can find us at:
- Associated Collegiate Press Midwinter National College Journalism Convention
Feb. 28-March 3, 2013
The Westin San Francisco Market Street
50 Third Street
San Francisco, CA 94103
Presentation: Don’t Just See the World, Cover it!
Friday, March 1
1:10 to 2:15 p.m.
- College Media Association Spring National College Media Convention
March 9-12, 2013
Sheraton New York Hotel
811 7th Avenue 53rd Street
New York, New York 10019
To make an appointment contact ieiMedia Executive Director Rachele Kanigel at rkanigel(at)ieimedia.com.
ieiMedia Blog: Browse Topics
Latest Blog Posts
- Urbino Program remembers Gwen Ifill’s visit
- ieiMedia faculty to chat on Twitter about studying abroad
- Meet with ieiMedia in Atlanta, Washington and California
- What makes a good travel writer? Meeting readers’ needs for humanity
- Apply by Oct. 4 to be one of 2,800 winners of a Gilman scholarship for study abroad
- ieiMedia announces new executive director, 2017 sites
- Urbino students convey stories through multimedia
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Our Students Get Great Gigs
- Urbino Project – 2016
- Urbino Now Magazine – 2016
- Urbino Project – 2015
- Urbino Now Magazine – 2015
- Urbino Project – 2014
- Urbino Now Magazine – 2014
- Urbino Project – 2013
- Urbino Now iPad App – 2013
- Urbino Project – 2012
- Urbino Now Magazine – 2012
- Urbino Project – 2011
- Urbino Now Magazine – 2011
- Urbino Now Magazine – 2010
- Urbino Project – 2009
- Urbino View Magazine – 2009
- Armagh Project – 2014
- Armagh Project – 2009
- Armagh Project – 2007
- Valencia Project – 2016
- Valencia Project – 2014
- Oslo Project – 2016
- Croatia Project – 2016
- Jerusalem Project – 2015
- Jerusalem Project – 2013
- Istanbul Project – 2015
- Istanbul Project – 2014
- Istanbul Project – 2013
- Istanbul Project – 2012
- Istanbul Stories – 2011
- Faces of Istanbul (Book) – 2011
- Nice Project – 2016
- Nice Project – 2015
- Perpignan Project – 2011
- Perpignan Project – 2010
- Cagli Project – 2008
- Cagli Project – 2007
- Cagli Project – 2006
- Cagli Project – 2005
- Cagli Project – 2004
- Cagli Project – 2003
- Cagli Project – 2002
- Camerano Project – 2006
by Gillette Vaira, University of Montana, The Perpignan Project 2010