Learn and earn history credits abroad

Imagine going on a tour to absolutely fabulous destinations that provide insights into European culture, history and the way of life. You actually have that opportunity. Southern Arkansas University is gearing up for a group tour of Switzerland, Italy and France May 13-25, 2013.

Because of intense interest among students who want to explore the world, SAU puts a group together each year to allow students to see Europe while offering them an opportunity to earn history credits.

“These trips are a tremendous learning opportunity, whether for pleasure or for educational purposes,” said Dr. Svetlana Paulson, who is leading the tour to Europe. “For example, in my world history class on campus I tell students about the Roman Colosseum. Those students who take this class while on the trip get to visit the Colosseum. Nothing beats being able to stand in the arena, see it in person and imagine what it was like in Roman days.”

Paulson has also led group tours to Rome and World War II landmarks along the western front. This tour is her third with SAU. Each year destinations are selected where the history is rich and those on the trip can get great insights into European culture.

Every year SAU allows students, faculty, staff, alumni and the community at large the chance to get in on one of these tours. The largest group Paulson has taken had 17 people.

“These trips are truly a great opportunity to meet new people and make friends,” said Paulson. “I always enjoy watching new friendship established among tour participants.”

The trip takes adventurers on some of the tourist sites, but also ventures to some great destinations off the beaten path. This tour will see Cinque Terre which is one of the most beautiful places in Italy, visit some ancient villages, attend a music festival in a gorgeous villa high atop the Alps, and visit Monaco and Nice which is touted as the playground of European royalty and movie-makers.

In reminiscing of the past tour featuring World War II history, Paulson remembers fondly a tour guide from Belgium who remembered the battle.

“Our tour guide was a local man in his late 80s. He remembered the battle, and told us how his family was saved by American soldiers. It was incredible to hear the story of his personal experience. He also took us to the forest and showed us fox holes that were used by E Company (featured in the movie Band of Brothers).”

Vice President for Academic Affairs Trey Berry and Mary Warnock Harsh.

Because she knows the value of such trips, Mary Warnock Harsh started the Warnock Student Travel Endowment to provide funds each year for “out-of-the-classroom” learning that might not be available to students otherwise.

Harsh said she was inspired when reading one of the SAU travel brochures.

“I have had two granddaughters in college and I know how important these opportunities are in an education. I thought it would be a good idea to help young people to go.

To contribute to the  Warnock Endowment or learn about other travel opportunities, visit www.saufoundation.org/

Don’t miss this opportunity. If you have questions or would like to sign up for the trip please contact Svetlana Paulson at sepaulson@saumag.edu.

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