|Alicia Rushin of Prairieville, RPCC Chancellor Dr. Joe Ben Welch, Stacey Ayo of Prairieville and Nicole Cromer of Gramercy stop to take a photo on the RPCC campus before departing for the Salzburg Global Seminar in Salzburg, Austria.
|RPCC Chancellor Dr. Joe Ben Welch and faculty members Dr. Lee Kleinpeter and Sam Bono stand on the balcony of the Schloss Leopoldskron, an 18 century palace that was featured in the 1965 film â€œThe Sound of Music,â€� while attending the Salzburg Global Seminar in Salzburg, Austria.
Students, faculty and staff at River Parishes Community College traveled to Salzburg, Austria to attend a global seminar about international relations, world economics and politics.
The six selected individuals spent a week in Austria attending the Salzburg Global Seminar.
The Salzburg Global Seminar is designed to engage higher education institutions, educators and students in developing a greater sense of global awareness and a commitment to actively address pressing issues of global concern.
Attendees stayed at the Schloss Leopoldskron, an 18 century palace that was featured in the 1965 film “The Sound of Music.”
In order to participate, students were required to write an essay, have at least a 3.5 grade point average and receive the recommendation of two faculty members. A committee of RPCC faculty and staff selected the three finalists – Stacey Ayo of Prairieville, Nicole Cromer of Gramercy and Alicia Rushin of Prairieville.
The students said the seminar gave them a better understanding of the world’s view of America and taught them how to respect others and their opinions.
“I learned a lot about how to effectively work with other people who have different views and different backgrounds,” Ayo said.
A visit to the Dachau concentration camp in Germany made a lasting impact on the students. Rushin said the visit to the Nazi concentration camp served as a call for action.
“I need to go back home and do things,” Rushin said. “I need to take steps to make this world a better place so things like this do not occur in our near future.”
Cromer said it took some time for the magnitude of what happened at the concentration camp to sink in.
“It was just hard for me to grasp. I heard about all this stuff happening,” Cromer said. “I read about it in the history books, but that was as real as it got, until that day when I was walking through the camp and it just didn’t seem real.”
The trip abroad was sponsored by the Louisiana Community and Technical College System, which is the governing body of public community and technical colleges in the state. The trip served as an opportunity to create global citizens and allow community college students the chance to study abroad.
The students said the program should be continued, giving other RPCC students the chance to travel abroad.