Scott Onion will graduate this May with his B.B.A. in Marketing with a concentration in sales and a minor in sports management. Over the summer, he participated in a faculty-led study abroad program in Prague. He was a recipient of the Rawls College McKenzie Scholarship, which helped fund his study abroad trip. Read more about his experience in Prague and how it will help him in the future in the Q&A below.
How was your experience in Prague this summer?
My experience in Prague was nothing short of incredible. I wish I was able to study abroad every summer.
What did you do there?
Our class took several organized trips together, one of which included a visit to Auschwitz in Poland. Our visit to Auschwitz was extremely powerful and moving. I had learned about the horrible things that happened there; however, seeing it in person had an extremely humbling effect on me. Outside of our organized class trips, I was able to travel to Spain, the Netherlands, the United Kingdom and Italy. Once you're overseas, flights within Europe are inexpensive, so traveling is much easier.
What motivated you to study abroad?
The Center for Global Engagement spoke to one of my classes, and after looking into the programs more, I realized it was a once in a lifetime opportunity that I did not want to miss.
Do you have any advice for someone hesitant to study abroad?
I would encourage everyone to look into the different study aboard options, even if money is a concern to them. Texas Tech offers a wide range of scholarships that can help make studying abroad financially feasible. I would also recommend researching the country you will be studying in to know what you should expect. It was very cheap where I studied in Prague; I could find a meal for the equivalent of $5 almost anywhere, but places like Norway are much more expensive.
Why do you think it is important to study abroad?
I think it was important to experience different cultures before entering the workforce.
What did you learn from your study abroad experience?
I learned that while not everyone speaks the same language or has the same cultural norms, people across the world still have an incredible amount in common.
How will your study abroad experience help you in the future?
My study abroad experience has already come up during several interviews. In the sales industry, many employers prefer their international sales employees to have previous experience abroad.
About the McKenzie Scholarship
The Mickey and Barbara McKenzie Scholarship, which was established by the McKenzie family in 2014 to encourage global learning through study abroad programs for graduate and undergraduate students. The scholarship awards $2,500 for fall/spring programs and $1,500 for intersession/maymester/summer programs. In 2017, 11 students received the scholarship.
In order to apply for the scholarship, students must fill out a paper application as well as submit a resume and a three-to-eight minute video essay answering five questions. Application due dates are and March 1 for the summer/maymester, May 1 for the fall and Nov. 1 for the spring/intersession. For more information on the application, visit the Center for Global Engagement or click here.