March 1, 2006      
Thriving International Exchange Program

Participating in a study abroad has become an important component of the Bishop’s experience for today’s students. Traveling to a foreign country can be a daunting experience for many but, according to Christie Carson, a fourth year international business/marketing student from Toronto, “Bishop’s students are outgoing and risk takers, so it is natural for us to go on exchange.”

This year 70 students, from all academic Divisions, took part in an international exchange. The majority go away in their penultimate year of study, either for one semester or the entire year. They choose from over 700 universities in 35 countries, with new ones added each year.

Lillian Rogerson ‘84, Co-ordinator of International Students, assists Bishop’s students in choosing the right university and in the logistics of going on exchange. “I regard the International Exchange Program as the crowning experience,” says Ms. Rogerson. “Studying abroad not only creates a sense of independence, but every door of life is opened – culturally, academically, and socially.”

Christie spent one year studying at Queensland University of Technology in Brisbane Australia from July 2003 to July 2004. She is honest about why she chose to study in Australia: its heat. “We don’t realize how much climate affects your daily life. Sports are different, transportation is different, and lifestyle is different. I was only inside to sleep and go to class. I would even study outside in the Botanic Gardens next to the University.”

All students in International Business benefit from a $1500 travel bursary, established in 1998 by David Williams with his creation of The SEED Foundation. Over 100 students have received a bursary.

“My flight to Brisbane alone was $2600, so the travel bursary played a big role in helping me finance this life changing experience,” says Christie. She was able to travel a great deal on the continent, and even found a job life guarding at a beach while going to school. “I found the job through Dave Anthony, a Queensland student who came to Bishop’s on exchange. Through my job I was chosen to represent Surfers Paradise LifeSaving Club in a work/volunteer position in Japan for the summer. An exchange to Australia led to a job and many contacts in Japan and around the world!”

Maury Hoehn, a fourth year Business student from Camrose (AB), spent the fall 2005 semester in Budapest and was also the grateful beneficiary of a $1500 Williams Travel Bursary. “I chose to study in Budapest because I knew nothing about it, and I figured it would be a lot different,” says Hoehn. Budapest turned out to be more modern than he thought – there was a Pizza Hut and Subway right across the street from his apartment.
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