As an alternative to taking courses on campus, many students have partaken in the enticing trend of studying abroad.
This summer promises to be no different, with a great many students opting to earn college credits in international locales in lieu of internships and summer jobs at Starbucks.
"Perhaps this decrease is due to economic conditions," Nandor Forgach said, graduate assistant for the Office of International Programs, citing possible reasons for the sharp decline in the number of students studying abroad.
However, students who have been able to seize the opportunity to study abroad have reported mostly positive experiences, among them senior Mitchell D'Rozario, a native of Bangladesh who chose to study here.
"The primary reason for a student to study abroad is two-fold," he said. "Either they want to learn the culture or they are interested in a field of study not offered in their country. As a Biology major, I was interested to leave Bangladesh and come study at Seton Hall because of both reasons. Coming from a developing country, I felt that the education here was strong enough to train me. I was also influenced by the closeness of the campus to New York."
Sophomore Alexander Ciniewicz, currently penciled in to study in Italy this summer, has already done so in Spain and said he finds the experience invigorating.
"It is a good way to get credits out of the way and have fun while doing so," he said. "You also get more cultured and sophisticated. You are forced to learn another language and speak it just to get around. You have to practice it every day, so you are going to pick it up very fast."
Senior Morella Mirabal, president of the International Students Association, is studying abroad from her native Curacao, and said she makes it her business to welcome other international students studying at Seton Hall. She also encourages others to traipse the globe if they so desire.
"Currently I am studying abroad here, and I have also studied abroad in Paris for the summer of 2008 in order to study French," she said. "We highly encourage students to study abroad; it is a great learning experience."
Forgach said he shared Mirabal's enthusiasm with particular vigor.
"There are a lot of success stories. Most students come back telling us about the wonderful time they had and how fun it was. It is a once in a lifetime experience."
Rudolph Palma can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.