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Anyone send their child off with International Student Volunteers?

dmbrand

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I figure that Tug folks are world travelers, thus, maybe you have sent your college-age offspring on excursions abroad. Representatives with International Student Volunteers were on my daughter's campus recently, and of course, she is determined to go to Australia next summer. We received the paperwork, and I have done an internet search; seems to be a legitimate organization. I am just wondering if anyone has some first-hand experience with them. DawnB
 

Luanne

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One thing that was very important to my dd when selecting which colleges she was going to apply to was if they had an international study abroad program. Pretty much all of them did. I got the feeling the school either already had programs in place, or would work with the student to help them set up a curriculum. I don't know if any of them worked with an organization such as what you're describing. What I'd be interested in, besides whether it's legitimate is:

1. Cost (most of the schools we were looking at indicated the cost for study abroad wasn't more than if they stayed on campus, and any grant or aid money could be applied)
2. Does the student get full credit for the time abroad
3. Has the school sent other students through this program, and if so can you talk to them and see how they felt about their experience

Those are the things I can think of off the top of my head.
 

applegirl

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I think the OP is referring to a program that may not receive any college credit since it is "volunteer" based?

When I was in my 20's I was a research assistant at biological research stations twice in Costa Rica where there were student programs for short periods. Most students behaved themselves, but a few got into some trouble.

I think the two biggest factors for your daughter (and for your peace of mind) are her maturity and the legitimacy of the organization. I don't know anything about International STudent Volunteers, but after some research if you find good feedback about them I think you should help her to go. These types of trips can change a person (hopefully for the good!) and are certain to be unforgettable.

You may want to post this same inquiry on the Tripadvisor forum titled "outdoor adventure". I think you will get some responses.

Janna
 

dmbrand

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I probably should have defined this a bit more. Applegirl, yes, this is a 4 week experience. Two weeks are spent volunteering in a conservation type activity, two weeks are spent on adventure(exploring the country). You both bring good points to the conversation. I told my daughter that this would/could be a precursor to spending a semester abroad. I have called the organization for more information, and feel that it is a worthwhile entity. I trust this board's(Tug)opinions, and was hoping to find someone who actually used them. There are so many more opportunities for today's youth, compared to when we were their age! DawnB
 

Patri

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My son was in England for one semester at a college with a personal relationship with his here. There were other programs and countries to choose from, but that one worked out best. When he got home there was a bit of trouble with two classes transferring. DS went straight to the dean, who made sure they transferred to his major core and a required elective. The dean said kids wouldn't go abroad if classes didn't transfer and he felt the experience was so valuable. Bully for him!
My daughter wants to go to Italy next year (spring semester). She is checking out programs and will bring home info at Thanksgiving. She called all worried that the economy would prevent study abroad. Since prices vary greatly, I said it could work out but we have to choose carefully.
 

dmbrand

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Came home from Australia a week ago...

Just wanted to update this, my daughter did participate with this organization this summer. They were well organized, and provided hosts throughout all phases of the volunteer and adventure portions of the experience.

I was apprehensive sending her off for five weeks, but, it was a trip of a lifetime for her.

After hearing about all her fun activities, I am now determined to get to Australia!
 

lprstn

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Thanks for the update. My kid wants to do this also when in college. We will see.
 

pjrose

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Check with the Campus

They would have needed permission to recruit on campus, so check with the appropriate office. Not sure if that would be Career, or Off-Campus, or what..... How long has this program been recruiting on campus? What does the office know about the program? do they know of any students who have gone? Will they give those students your contact info so you can talk to the students?

Also, the State Department may have a registry of such programs - I know they do for foreign students coming here.
 
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