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OU students prepare for summer study away programs

As many Ohio University students begin settling into their summer routines, some Bobcats are preparing for a new and entirely different kind of semester. OU offers many study away programs in the summer months, one of which is being taken advantage of by Max Kornblut, a senior studying history and media arts. 

Kornblut is currently preparing for the Ohio-in-LA program, which will entail working at an internship, taking classes, attending networking events and many other immersive experiences in California’s largest city. 

“The idea is to help you get acclimated into the L.A. business scene for film, television or music and figure out if that’s right for you,” Kornblut said. 

Kornblut is no stranger to studying away programs. As a Cutler Scholar, he has been required to fulfill a certain amount of study away programs that have led him to places like Hawaii and Thailand. His past experiences have allowed him to feel more comfortable moving to a new place, but there are some persistent anxieties associated with these kinds of programs. 

“I’m really excited but … I’m going to be in a city I’ve never been to,” Kornblut said. “I’m going to be doing things I really care about, but I’m still looking for an internship. It’s scary, but there’s a lot of excitement, and knowing that even if it doesn’t end up being the place for me, I get to experience something I’ve never experienced and probably learn to love a lot about it.” 

Sylvia Witt, a junior studying musical theater, is also participating in a professional internship over the summer; Witt will spend eight weeks in Ireland working with the Screen Directors Guild of Dublin. After spending past summers working minimum wage jobs, Witt decided there was more to discover during her three months away from school. 

“I worked at a pizza place and I was like, ‘You know what, I could be doing literally anything else,’” Witt said. “So I started looking into this and it's kind of been like a year in the making to not work a minimum wage job again … I could be spending my time doing something that’s going to advance my career and be a good resume-builder, and then I can go learn things in another country.”

Not only will this be Witt’s first time studying abroad, but it will also be her first time leaving the U.S. Although she has found herself intimidated by the idea of traveling to another country on her own, she is excited to experience the new culture and all of the things that come with it. 

Although some students tend to study abroad during the school year, it is not financially feasible for some, having to miss out on potential classes with the possibility of paying for another year of school. 

Kornblut believes doing the program in the summer instead of the fall will be a better financial option for him. 

“I would have had to definitely take an extra year and then pay a lot more money for that than I am for this program,” Kornblut said.  

The experience of studying abroad is a formative one that OU greatly encourages through funding opportunities and a strong office for study-away programs. 

“It’s totally worth doing if you’re able to, it’s always fun,” Kornblut said. “You’re going to meet a ton of great people a lot of the time, and more often than not it’s a really cool experience to have during the summer when it’s … lower stakes, lower stress.” 


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