Imagine visiting somewhere far from the United States and being recognized.
Now, I’m not talking about an entertainer, politician or athlete. I’m referring to Troy University students. That is what has happened to TROY’s British Studies Tour group, sponsored by the College of Communication and Fine Arts, in England this summer.
Students Evey Bell, a senior broadcast journalism major from Theodore; Deanna Engelman, a junior broadcast journalism major from Elberta; Whitley Kilcrease, a junior print journalism major from Andalusia; Dalton Orwig, a freshman broadcast journalism major from Grove Hill; and, Virginia Spears, a junior print journalism major from Prattville; as well as TROY communication studies adjunct instructor Mollie Waters and TROY sciences librarian Brian Webb joined me on a two-week long British popular culture study throughout England. And just about everywhere we visited, someone outside of the state of Alabama acknowledged Troy University.
At least someone in the group daily donned a particular type of TROY apparel from T-shirts to windbreakers to shorts. And with that came a form of positive recognition from someone not affiliated with the University. For instance, we were visiting the Tower of London during our first weekend when a lady at a theatre ticket counter noticed one of us wearing a TROY T-shirt. In her thick British accent, she stopped us and said that her son was a member of the golf team at TROY a number of years ago. Another woman from Germany mentioned that her husband had received a degree through TROY’s Global Campus. To that, student Evey Bell replied, “TROY’s everywhere.”
Several days later, I was speaking with a young lady on the Royal National Theatre backstage tour in which all of us were also participating. She told me she was on New York University’s theatre department staff and was well aware of TROY’s existence. I could not help from smiling. It certainly is a small world.
I applaud TROY Chancellor Jack Hawkins’s endorsement of all students, faculty and staff taking part in some type of study abroad program. The world is such a wonderful place that needs to be shared by all.
In the two weeks that we were in the United Kingdom, we walked where Shakespeare and Dickens wrote, examined centuries-old architecture that dates back hundreds of years before the United States became a country, marveled at where the Beatles recorded their rooftop performance and visited many more important sites.
Spurlock is associate director of Troy University’s Hall School of Journalism where he serves as an associate professor.
Study abroad programs
A number of study abroad opportunities are available to Troy University students. This past summer, students traveled to Central America and several locations across Europe.
Among the study-abroad opportunities available for summer 2010 are:
- History of the Holocaust Tour, Eastern Europe
- Spanish Language, Costa Rica
- Language and Culture, China
- Music and Culture, Germany
- Broadcasting and Theatre, England
- Art and Design, Italy
- Language and Culture, France
- Art and Design, Sweden
- Photographic Safari, Kenya, and
- Music Industry and Culture, Spain.