More than 100 Troy University students took to the
air and sea with their studies from late spring through the
summer, broadening their horizons to include Europe,
Asia, Asia Minor, the Middle East, South America and the
In a historic first-ever trip, four Trojans became the
first to visit Cuba in a 10-day tour of the island nation
under the leadership of Dr. Johanna Alberich, an assistant
professor of Spanish, and journalism lecturer David “Doc”
Kirby. The group first stopped off in the Cuban-American
community of Ybor City in Tampa, Fla., to familiarize
themselves with the Cuban culture. Dr. Shari Hoppin,
an associate professor in the Hall School of Journalism
and Communication, and Lisa Vardaman, an educational
specialist in the Wallace Library joined the tour.
It was Dr. Alberich’s second trip of the year, however.
She had previously taken a dozen students to Costa Rica
for immersion in the Spanish language and culture. Costa
Rica was also the destination for a March trip by four
athletic training students under the direction of Dr. Amanda
Benson, social work and rehabilitation services students
under Dr. Denise Green, and hospitality, event management
and sport management students under Dr. Anthony
Dixon. Dr. Green’s students worked on ongoing research,
attended workshops, and participated in two foster-care
homes. Students under Drs. Benson and Dixon helped
work the Central American Games and met the Costa
Janet Gaston, an instructor and health professions
advisor, led a 23-student team to the South American
country to study pre-med and biology issues, and nursing
graduate students under the direction of Dr. Bernita
Hamilton did work in Costa Rica.
Dr. Gina Mariano, an assistant professor of counseling
and psychology, also took a group of undergraduate
psychology students there.
Eleven biological sciences students took to the
Caribbean Sea to study health issues connected to cruise
lines under the leadership of Heather Lofton-Garcia, a
biological sciences instructor.
Five students traveled to Ashkelon, Israel where they
participated in the Leon Levy Expedition to Ashkelon,
one of the Middle East’s largest ongoing excavations,
and Dr. Ed Pappanastos led five risk management and
insurance students on job-shadowing internships at Lloyds
of London. Dr. Noel Kaylor led another 10 students to
Germany for culture and translation experience, and Dr.
Dan Puckett took political science students to Greece.
A pair of jaunts to France rounded out the summer’s
study abroad experiences with Dr. Jim Sherry leading a
group of 11 students for French language and culture
immersion, and Judy Van Doorn, an assistant professor of
counseling and psychology, leading a group of four on a
tour of the art of Rome, Florence and Paris.
Lusk is a university relations coordinator.
Students study abroad
during spring & summer
TROY history professor Dr. Dan Puckett with students
(left to right) Macy Phillips, Erin Hardin, Connie McComb
Brown, Catherine Chico, Jennifer Weirich and Sasha Tran
during a study abroad trip to Greece this summer.
by Clif Lusk