At Home: Low percentage of Canadian undergrads studying abroad
According to a recent study, most Canadian undergrads say they’re interested in world issues and like the idea of studying abroad. But when it comes to putting that into action, ?less than 3 per cent ventured to a foreign country as part of their studies.?
As the Globe and Mail reports, some of the issues keeping Canadian undergrads at home are difficulties in meeting degree requirements, a lack of awareness about foreign-study options, and money.
Studying abroad can give students a competitive edge in an increasingly globalized world, and many governments encourage it. The study notes that several countries, ?particularly members of the European Union and Japan,? make it much easier for their students to study abroad. Even the US, whose foreign-study numbers are comparable to Canada’s, has a bill before Congress that ?proposes funding for one million Americans to study abroad each year.?
Still, some educators believe that the number of students studying abroad is actually much higher. The study, commissioned by the Canadian Bureau for International Education, only reflects ?a snap shot of a single year.? John Dixon, a vice-provost at Queen’s University who oversees international programs, told reporters that some Queen’s programs, such as commerce, see more than 80 per cent of undergrads gain international study experience.
In Foreign News: US experts predict wild hurricane season
The 2010 Atlantic hurricane season is shaping up to be ?extremely active,? and that could spell even wider fallout from the BP oil disaster. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), based in Maryland, released its storm forecast this week, predicting ?14 to 23 named storms,? as well as ?eight to 14 hurricanes? and as many as seven ?major hurricanes.?
As the CBC reports, named storms are those with winds that reach 39 mph or higher. Hurricanes have wind speeds of ?74 mph or higher,? and major hurricanes are those with winds reaching 111 mph. Category 3, 4, and 5 storms are classed as major hurricanes.
Along with the usual concerns major storms bring, there’s also fear that the wild weather will spread the BP oil spill even further than expected. Jane Lubchenko, PhD., is undersecretary of commerce for oceans and atmosphere and she told reporters that a Gulf hurricane could mean ?that some of the oil on the surface will be transported through the storm surge. Where the oil on the surface is transported will depend on the track of that hurricane.?
Although ordinary citizens can’t control the spread of the oil spill, they’re being urged to prepare for the storm season well ahead of time. A presidential proclamation advises precautions such as ?developing a family disaster plan, maintaining an emergency supply kit, securing homes, businesses, and belongings and learning evacuation routes.?