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Two Kent State Tuscarawas Honors Students Accepted Into Study Abroad Program

Posted July 11, 2011

Ryan Fails and John Hill, Honors Program students at Kent State University at Tuscarawas, will study at Leicester University in England next year.

Ryan Fails and John Hill, both Honors Program students at Kent State University at Tuscarawas, will have the extraordinary opportunity to spend the next academic year at Leicester University, near London, England. In April, they were accepted into the Kent State Honors College Study Abroad Program. After completing extensive paperwork and acquiring student visas, they will leave for England in September, and are schedule to return home in June 2012.

Fails, 29, of Uhrichsville, plans to graduate in 2013 with a Bachelor of Arts in justice studies. He’ll continue his education by pursuing a law degree. Hill, 39, of Dennison, graduated in May with an Associate of Applied Business in computer technology and will graduate in 2013 with a bachelor’s degree in the same field.

All coursework completed during the educational experience in England will apply toward their degree programs. While there, Fails and Hill will also begin research for their honors thesis, a requirement of the Kent State Honors Program.

“This study-abroad experience for our honors students is yet another measure of the growth and maturation of Kent State Tuscarawas,” says Dr. John Jewell, professor of English and Honors Program coordinator. “We are acutely conscious of our responsibility to prepare our students for success in a global economy, and we recognize that undergraduate research, internships, service-learning and firsthand knowledge of foreign cultures will give our students a significant competitive advantage when they present their credentials to employers and to graduate schools.”

Fails and Hill were both intrigued by the Honors Study Abroad Program for different reasons. “I want the ability to view the U.S. from another country’s perspective,” says Fails. “I am hoping this experience will help me excel in law school and my future endeavors, where I want to work with the International Justice Mission, which brings human rights to third world countries.”

Hill is looking forward to the trip for the broad educational and cultural experiences it will provide. “I want to become well-rounded as a student and an individual,” Hill says. “I think it’s important to view the U.S. from other people’s perspectives. It will allow me to appreciate the country I live in.”

“Ryan and John are excellent examples of the outstanding Honors Program students at Kent State Tuscarawas,” adds Melissa Crites, Honors Program admissions counselor. “Both are hard-working, well-rounded students who excel in the classroom, participate in campus activities and serve their communities. Ryan and John both meet the high academic standards of the Honors Program while carrying full-time course loads and holding positions of leadership in campus organizations. Both men have worked incredibly hard to secure their spots in the study abroad program.

The cost for the trip is $24,000 which includes tuition, room and board, book fees, class fees and bus passes. Fails and Hill each received a $5000 Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship. They have applied for additional scholarships and will have to take out student loans to participate in the study-abroad program.

Leicester University’s academic calendar has Christmas and spring breaks. While Fails and Hill plan to return to the U.S. for the five-week Christmas break, they plan on backpacking across Europe during the five-week spring break.

“Students who study abroad return to describe their experiences as life changing,” Crites says. “I am certain Ryan and John will return to Kent State Tuscarawas with not only wonderful memories and breathtaking photos but also a deeper understanding of themselves and their world. I know they will enlighten other students as they share the stories of the places they visited and the people they met. This experience will give both students knowledge and experience that will prove invaluable as they continue their education and enter the job market.