Students with science-related majors often express having difficulty studying abroad due to the rigidity of the course requirements for their majors. These students don’t have many extra electives, compared to students in the College of Liberal Arts or School of Media and Communication.
“Over the past few years, I’ve looked on Temple’s website for study abroad [opportunities],” said Matthew Short, a junior bioengineering major. “There haven’t really been any opportunities for bioengineering specifically. Even engineering is really rare.”
Fortunately, a new Spring 2017 program at Temple Rome will make it easier for engineering students to study abroad.
This program is a positive move for Temple, allowing the opportunities of the university to be more inclusive. Students with more rigid course requirements for their major should be allowed to gain the benefits that come with studying abroad, like a new sense of independence or cultural immersion.
However, even though this new engineering program is a step in the right direction, limitations still exist. Students can only participate during the spring semester of their sophomore year, and the program is only open to mechanical and civil engineering majors.
But this new program should be applauded. Eventually, the university should look to expand more opportunities for study abroad to other engineering majors and to other science majors, like chemistry and biology. And perhaps, the university could create opportunities in countries other than Italy.
Of course, expansion of any kind will take time, but it is important students do not feel forced to stop growing in ways outside of their area of study simply because of logistics.