Baylor Bears take St. Andrews

Baylor's study abroad program at St. Andrews University gave students the opportunity to be exposed to the melting pot of cultures in Scotland.

The Baylor at St. Andrews, Scotland program is a semester long study abroad trip centered in the world’s home of golf that takes place in both the fall and spring semesters. The third-oldest university in the English speaking world, the University of St. Andrews was established in 1413 and is home to over 8,000 students from around the world. With over half of the students classified as international, the wide realm of cultures in St. Andrews provides the ultimate melting pot experience, program participants say.

“It was the perfect blend of everything you’d hope to get from studying abroad,” Milwaukee, Wis., senior Kirsten Koschnick, who participated in the program, said. “You’re able to immerse yourself in the city because you’re in an intimate and charming community where you can stay on weekends, meet people that live there and feel like you belong, but you’re also close enough to travel anywhere you want,”

Koschnick journeyed twice a week from her two-bedroom flat in St. Andrews and ventured along the North Shore to take one turn right and another turn left before arriving on South Street to join five other Baylor students for a two-hour course titled “Philosophic Principles of the American Founding” taught by Dr. Timothy Burns, Baylor professor of Political Science and graduate program director Baylor’s political science department.

“The uniqueness of St. Andrews allows you to get the experience of whatever it is you’re searching for,” Koschnick said.

The uniqueness of the opportunity is evident in just the rankings itself: Baylor students who have crossed the pond for this unique opportunity study at third-highest ranked university in the United Kingdom and rankings consistently place them within the top 1% of world universities, according to US News and World Report.

Bears Abroad, Baylor’s study abroad department, offers countless study abroad opportunities, however the Baylor at St. Andrews program is just one of a select few where Baylor students are given the opportunity to travel to another part of the world with a group of other Baylor students accompanied by a Baylor professor and also earn Baylor credit hours.

“It was nice having a professor travel over there with us because if there was ever a situation it was nice to have a real adult to go to,” said San Francisco, Calif. senior Megan Sarsfield.

Sarsfield said she was was so impressed with her time in St. Andrews that she reapplied and went back in the spring, which has become a noticeable pattern among Baylor students, to get an even greater immersion and experience than she already had.

“The goal of studying abroad is to immerse yourself in the full culture, and I felt I wouldn’t be able to have that immersion and experience that I wanted to if I hadn’t stayed,” Sarsfield said.

In addition to this unique experience is the ability to walk less than a thousand steps and find yourself on the Old Course at St. Andrews, the oldest and most iconic golf course in the world. For just $300 U.S. dollars, a student can gain access to the Old Course and the six other golf courses available at the prestigious town that is home to golf, according to the University of St. Andrews website.

The Baylor at University of St. Andrews program runs in the fall and spring of each academic calendar year. The requirements that must be fulfilled to take part in this trip can be found at The Fall 2017 group trip will be directed by Dr. Charles McDaniel, associate Professor of Baylor’s Interdisciplinary Core. Dr. McDaniel will teach the course titled, The Moral Ecology of Capitalism. The deadline to apply for the Fall 2017 semester at St. Andrews is March 15th.