Scholarship Awarded for Summer Study at UMSL
Published on 25 Nov, 2006
This past summer marked a series of first-time experiences for Anoud Al-Sanafi, a senior majoring in Accounting at GUST. In July, Anoud embarked on her first trip to the United States to take summer courses at the University of Missouri, St. Louis (UMSL).
This past summer marked a series of first-time experiences for Anoud Al-Sanafi, a senior majoring in Accounting at GUST. In July, Anoud embarked on her first trip to the United States to take summer courses at the University of Missouri, St. Louis (UMSL). Not only was it a new experience for her to take classes abroad, but it was her first time traveling independently.
Annoud's life-changing experience was made possible through a newly-created scholarship fund at GUST for students demonstrating outstanding academic achievement. Al-Sanafi was the first student to receive the UMSL Summer Scholarship, a full scholarship covering tuition and expenses for up to seven credit hours at UMSL, round-trip airfare, housing, and allowances for meals and transportation in St. Louis.
Al-Sanafi enrolled in a Business Writing course during the July summer session at UMSL and earned credits toward her degree at GUST. She is convinced that her English communication skills greatly improved as a result of the month she spent taking classes at UMSL. "At UMSL, I was forced to use English all of the time. The experience has helped me to feel more confident speaking English," stated Al-Sanafi.
The benefits of short-term study abroad experience go far beyond the classroom. "This experience exposed me to a completely different way of living," explained Al-Sanafi. While study abroad students are often stretched beyond their comfort levels initially, they quickly learn to respond creatively to new challenges. "In Kuwait, you depend a lot on the support of your family. When I was studying in the United States this summer, I had to figure out how to do things by myself. I didn't realize I was capable of doing so many things on my own," said al-Sanafi.
After classes and homework time, Anoud filled the remaining hours of her days visiting the local attractions in St. Louis. By the end of her month's stay, she had visited several museums in St. Louis, the botanical gardens, Union Station, Old Courthouse, and, of course, the city's most well-known monument, the Gateway Arch. Anoud even took in a professional baseball game at Busch stadium, home of the St. Louis Cardinals.
Students gain invaluable skills by studying in a different cultural environment: determination, patience, open-mindedness and flexibility. It is also an opportunity to hone critical intercultural communication and problem-solving skills. "I would definitely recommend that other students consider applying for the GUST Summer Award," said Al-Sanafi. "And I would be willing to go with them again as their guide," she added cheerfully.
When asked what recommendations she would give to prospective candidates for the GUST Summer Award program, al-Sanafi advised, "I would tell them to do as much research as possible before leaving. I would tell them to go with an open-minded attitude and a desire to take advantage of every moment."
Applications for the 2007 UMSL Summer Scholarships will be due on February 7th, 2006. Eligible students must have a minimum 3.0 cumulative GPA, 500 and above TOEFL score and junior-year status (at least 75 credits completed). For more information, please contact the Office of Admissions and Registration.