December 24, 2015

Your Gifts Make a Difference

“Studying abroad was something I’d always looked forward to doing and have been researching since I arrived at BU, but receiving a Professional Experience Grant just really made it happen.” That’s what Charlotte Papparella, a senior Mass Communications Major from Newton, New Jersey, said when she learned that she had received a grant to help with expenses for a study-abroad opportunity.

Charlotte will board the plane on January 1 for her trip to Florence University of the Arts in Florence, Italy. Her decision to incorporate the study-abroad experience into her education was due directly to the Professional Experience Grant she received from the College of Liberal Arts. 

“When I learned of the opportunity to apply for support for the trip to Italy, I was intrigued, because Italy was always one of the places I thought would be the most interesting to visit and learn about,” Charlotte said. “Plus this specific trip was short enough to allow me to take a course and fit it in to still graduate on time.”

Though the timing and the destination of the this particular international study opportunity were just what Charlotte was looking for, she still was not sure that she’d be able to afford to make the trip.  “Learning that I was awarded the grant was very relieving,” Charlotte added. “I would have tried to do everything possible to make it work, but receiving the funding really solidified my decision and lessened the burden of worrying about how expensive it was going to be.”

The grant Charlotte received came from donations to Bloomsburg University’s Annual Fund that are not designated to be distributed to specific areas of the university. They are then placed into a pool of dollars that are designated by University President, David L. Soltz to be disbursed to each of the University’s different colleges where they are then assigned by the dean of the college to address areas of need.

In this case, the dean of the College of Liberal Arts determined that the money should be used to support students who were pursuing study abroad opportunities. Charlotte will be attending this trip with one other student from BU. “I am very grateful to the people who donated to the university that are making this trip possible for me,” said Charlotte. “I have always felt it is important to explore and learn about things outside of our own culture, and now I will have to opportunity to add that to my college experience.”

Charlotte will be taking one class for 2-3 hours per day, Monday through Friday during her trip from January, 1-22, 2016. When not attending class, Charlotte says she will attempt to absorb as much of the sights and culture of Italy as she can. She’s also looking forward to sharing her experience with the individuals who have helped make it possible.

“I will definitely be posting a lot about my trip on social media and I’m inviting all Bloomsburg University’s donors and alumni to share this experience with me,” Charlotte said. To help show donors that their gifts definitely do make a difference in the lives of BU students, Charlotte is going to share her posts throughout her journey on the Bloomsburg University Foundation’s social media channels. 

To follow Charlotte and learn more about her personal experience follow the BU foundation on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram.

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