First photo competition displays study abroad experiences

April 11, 2006

2006_04_11.jpgPLATTEVILLE - Students from the University of Wisconsin-Platteville were recently able to share their experiences of studying abroad with the rest of the UWP campus by participating in a photo competition. Students, who have studied abroad through one of UW-Platteville's programs within the last two years, could enter up to four photos each. Fellow students, faculty and staff viewed the photos, displayed in Heritage Hall in the Pioneer Student Center, and then voted on their favorite. "The diversity of the photos received reflected the wide range of study abroad and exchange opportunities UWP offers," said Suzanne Grebe, associate outreach specialist at the Institute for Study Abroad Programs at UW-Platteville. The photos also captured culture and things not typically seen in the U.S.

When out recruiting, Grebe saw other universities hold photo competitions for their study abroad students and liked the idea so much she decided to start it at UWP. She said, "The contest was an opportunity for students who have not traveled abroad to share in the experiences of those who have studied abroad."

Ryan Bonell, of Oshkosh, won first prize ($100) for his photograph, "Velkommen to the Kjerag Bolt." William Tatro, of Stevens Point, won second prize ($20 to Los Amigos) for his photograph, "Ben Himself." For third prize, there was a tie between Jennifer Giudice, of Madison, for her photo, "Volcan Poas," and Dallas Ramsden, of Wisconsin Rapids, for his photo, "Relaxing in Shanghai." Giudice and Ramsden each won two movie passes to Millennium Cinema. Bonell also received an honorable mention for his photo, "Fascinating building of Brygyen." Los Amigos and Millennium Cinema donated the second and third place prizes respectively. Bonell commented, "I feel that the competition was a great opportunity to try to encourage students to participate in the study abroad program. I hope that students were able see what opportunities are awaiting them if they decide to go abroad. I feel my photos helped explain my experience in Norway, which was exciting, educational and eye opening. I suggest studying abroad to any student; it will be six months of your life that will stick with you forever."

The winning photos are available for viewing on the International Programs website at /intprog/contest.html. Because the contest was such a success, Grebe said that they hope to hold it at least each year, if not each semester. Studying abroad doesn't have to be expensive, added Grebe, noting that there are scholarships available. Three scholarships she emphasized, for students looking to study abroad this fall, include a $2,000 scholarship through the Engineering Department to study in Newcastle, Australia; a $1,650 scholarship offered through the Spanish American Institute in Seville, Spain; and a $3,500 scholarship through the American University of Rome to study in Rome, Italy. Students may visit /intprog/intgrants_scholarships.html for more information about scholarships and grants.

Fourteen UWP students participated in the photo competition, including Bonell, Stavanger, Norway; Tatro, Jonkoping, Sweden; Ramsden, Newcastle, Australia; Giudice, Costa Rica; Amanda Sorenson, London, England; Andrew LuMaye, Newcastle, Australia; Stephanie Sutton, Seville, Spain; John Leuck, London, England; Sebastian Sholl, Nagasaki, Japan; Ian Schiefelbien, San Marcos, Nicaragua; Briana Voigt, Galway, Ireland; Paul Boyette, Seville, Spain; Matthew Rynish, Newcastle, Australia; and Becky Adamski, Moscow, Russia.

The UWP Study Abroad Office sponsored the competition. Photos were displayed in Heritage Hall at the PSC from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., Tuesday, March 28, through Thursday, March 30.

Contact: Suzanne Grebe, associate outreach specialist, Institute for Study Abroad Programs, (608) 342-1010,

Prepared by: Kate McKinney, UWP Public Relations, (608) 342-1194,


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