Asian Studies students usually study abroad in for a semester or a year for most of them this is the most exciting and valuable part of their education. Some study abroad scholarship money is available from the Asian Studies program. Our students also have an excellent record of getting outside scholarships both from agencies in the US and in Asia.

Kailyn Provitt '21

Korea University

Kailyn Provitt

As someone who always has big ideas that struggle to come to fruition, I am so grateful to the IUP Asian Studies Department and the Office of International Education for their constant support, understanding, and communication. I would have never been able to apply for and receive the Gilman Scholarship and push myself out of my comfort zone, while also discovering where I fit in my academic world without them.

 I studied at Korea University, Sejong Campus, for the 2019-20 academic year. Before the COVID-19 outbreak, I surprised myself by joining a traditional drumming club. With them, I traveled around the city and even performed for the school. Through the school's ITS program, I traveled to places such as Buddhist temples and traditional towns. I even visited the National Museum in Yongsan and took some of the most beautiful pictures of tapestries. To say studying abroad in Korea changed my life is an understatement: it helped me learn more about myself than I ever learned before.

I spent most of my time traveling to large city markets with my friends and becoming more adventurous with food. I did have a streak of trouble with keeping my hands on my possessions, so I had the amazing experience of tracking down my phone with the Hongdae police department. However, my main goal for traveling to Korea was to decide if I loved it enough to move abroad and continue my education. I think I loved it too much because I have now returned to Korea as a teacher through the EPIK program. I have to thank IUP—once again—for the guidance and gentle pushes I received to set me up for working abroad and ultimately furthering my education in the Asian Studies field.

Leah Brockman '18

Kansai Gaidai UniversityLeah Brockman

The study abroad program at Indiana University of Pennsylvania allowed me to have various new and exciting experiences I could never have back home. In the fall of 2016, I went to Kansai Gaidai University in Hirokata City, Japan. I absolutely loved my study abroad experience. Flying to Japan was probably the most challenging part because it was my first experience flying anywhere in the world. From there it was one eye-opening experience after another. My experience ended up being so much more than just attending classes there.

Studying abroad was meeting new people, experiencing a different culture, exploring new places, and, of course, all the delicious food I could eat! Experiencing culture shock in such an extreme way opened my eyes to future possibilities in Japan, which has led me to pursuing a master’s degree in teaching English as a second language. Studying Japanese before going there was a tremendous help in communicating as well. I traveled to Tokyo, Yokohama, Akihabara, Kyoto, Osaka, Nara, Hiroshima, Biwa, and many other interesting local places. There was a lot to do, and I was determined to see as much of it as possible. 

Dan Wethli ‘19

Fullbright, Boren, and Zhi-Xing fellowships. Nanjing University

Dan Wethli

I had such a fantastic experience at IUP, majoring in Asian Studies. What made the crucial difference for me was the time that I was able to work one on one with my professors. All of my professors encouraged me and helped me uncover what my passions were. They were more than willing to discuss my questions and concerns after class or at their office hours whenever I needed help or just wanted to ask questions. Through writing my honors thesis during my senior year, I was able to go in-depth into my research topic and work with Dr. Baumler on what interested me the most.  My honors thesis was a challenge and took a lot of effort and continued dedication. However, I was able to persevere and learn so much in the process. I believe working with such great professors at IUP is what led me to win a Fulbright grant in 2020. I was able to take the research topic that I used for my honors thesis and continue my research in China. I was so fortunate to have such dedicated and passionate professors who genuinely cared about my interests.

In 2018, I was selected as one of thirty American students to participate in the Zhi-Xing fellowship. This program is jointly implemented by the China Education Association for International Exchange and the Asia Society. The program aims to teach students about Chinese culture, business, and society through field visits. I toured the headquarters of companies, including Alibaba and Tencent. In addition, we went to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Beijing. The Zhi-Xing Fellowship was an excellent opportunity to meet other students from around China and the United States. 

Rachel Brown '19

Nagoya University of Foreign StudiesRachel Brown

Studying abroad in Japan was the single best decision that I’ve made in my life. Not only did it allow me to work on and improve my Japanese language skills, but it opened even more opportunities that I hadn’t even thought about before traveling there. I became an English tutor to Japanese students and learned how to communicate through language barriers. I worked with both Japanese and foreign teachers on projects that could be enjoyed by all types of students. I was even given the opportunity to beta-test a virtual reality game through a Japanese news station! On top of making connections and friendships with Japanese people and learning about their culture, I was also introduced to a wide variety of people and cultures from all over the world that also happened to be studying abroad like me. I’ve met and made friends with people from London, Australia, Germany, South Korea, Denmark, Russia, and many other places. The experience was unlike anything I could have imagined and was amazing beyond belief. It was while I was studying abroad in Japan that I made the decision to return there after receiving my degree. And so, I did! Because of my time studying abroad, I was able to seek job opportunities through the connections I had made and am now a contracted English teacher in Tokyo with a program that runs through the Japanese government. I have had so many incredible experiences and made so many amazing friends, and it’s all thanks to the wonderful study abroad programs that myself and others had the chance to be a part of.