Eight University of Tulsa students recently received scholarships that will enable them to live and learn around the world. These outstanding students will be among the first at TU to resume international studies after the onset of the pandemic.
Carson Hlavacek, Cara Johnson, Lauren Kerr, Linnea Krautter, Edward Trimble, Piangno Tuang and Carlos Vallejo were awarded Benjamin A. Gilman International scholarships, which is a program of the U.S. Department of State. Catherine Donner, meanwhile, received a scholarship from Freeman-ASIA, which provides funding for U.S. undergraduate students to study abroad in East or Southeast Asia.
“We are very excited to be sending students abroad again and even more excited that they received so many prestigious and nationally competitive study abroad awards,” said Laura Semenow, the director of global student mobility in TU’s Center for Global Engagement (CGE). “After suspending study abroad programs in spring 2020, we were finally able to approve students to participate in selected programs and once again take part in life-changing experiences. These scholarships contribute to the CGE commitment to supporting students of diverse backgrounds and economic status to study abroad in diverse locations across the globe.”
Chemistry and German double major Carson Hlavacek will have the opportunity to put his German proficiency to the test at the University of Siegen in Siegen, Germany, from October 2021 to March 2022. While at Siegen, he plans to take German chemistry courses as well as some block courses in order to immerse himself in German language and culture. Following his studies at Siegen, Carson intends to intern in Germany for several months. “My main goal is to learn German through classes and through being immersed in the community, but I also want to get experience in working in a German company/research lab in my internship” Carson commented.
Student athlete Cara Johnson is headed to Seoul, South Korea, this summer to study Korean language, culture and society: “I hope to experience as many new things as possible, immerse myself and become acquainted with Korean culture and arguably, most importantly, to do my best to take advantage of every opportunity presented to me by being where my feet are and living in the now.” Upon her graduation in spring 2022, Cara will leave TU with a bachelor’s degree in media studies, as well as minors in Spanish, health sciences, biomedical engineering and dance.
Senior Lauren Kerr also plans to study Korean culture and language this fall at Korea University in Seoul. While abroad, she hopes to improve her Korean language skills and to immerse herself in South Korea’s history and culture. When she returns to campus in December, she will graduate with a bachelor of fine arts in photography and a minor in art history.
Italy is calling biological sciences major Linnea Krautter. This summer, she will live in Sorrento, where she will study marine biology. “I hope to learn more about the marine ecosystems in Italy,” she commented.
Biochemistry and psychology double major Edward Trimble will have the opportunity to learn at The University of Nicosia through a virtual program this summer. Trimble plans to study various topics related to global health care, as well as discover more about how culture affects communication and patient outcomes: “I hope to learn how health care systems from across the world differ from our own, and what information we could possibly use to improve our current system.”
Computer science student Piangno Tuang is also headed to Seoul this fall, where he will enroll in block and elective classes to fulfill his TU degree requirements. Piangno is looking forward to “learning a new culture and experiencing a new environment to become more independent in.”
Pre-med student Carlos Vallejo will use his scholarship in a future term to live and learn in a Spanish-speaking country, with the hope of obtaining a health care-related internship to accompany his exercise and sports science studies. “I want to expand my knowledge of the current health care distribution system in other countries and compare it to the United States’ system,” said Vallejo. “I hope to gain unique shadowing medical experience by witnessing the current struggles other countries are dealing with amid recovering from the COVID-19 pandemic. I am excited to be placed in a country that is completely out of my comfort zone and to be challenged to grow academically and as an individual.”
This fall, applied mathematics student Catherine Donner will head to Mahidel University International College in Bangkok, Thailand. While there, she plans to immerse herself in a variety of subjects, ranging from Asian philosophy to mathematics, business and data science. “As a global scholar at TU, I expect my time abroad to be very beneficial for expanding my global perspective, as well as enriching for my academic expertise,” said Donner.
Does the idea of combining international travel and learning excite you? Then reach out to TU’s Center for Global Engagement and get your adventure underway.