Students Capture Dazzling Images during Study Abroad

Posted: November 8, 2012 at 5:06 pm, Last Updated: November 13, 2012 at 4:57 pm

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By Frances Womble

Sometimes capturing a great photo requires careful timing and planning. Sometimes it just comes down to luck.

That was the case for senior Kim Harding, an integrative studies major in New Century College who studied Italian Media, Culture and Society in Milan last summer.

“I saw this umbrella-lined beach just as I was stepping out of the train station at Cinque Terre,” says Harding. “The waters were so sparkling clear that I could see the jellyfish floating in the coastal waters.” So before you could say “snap!” she had pulled out one of several cameras she’d brought along and captured a winning image. Harding says she took more than 3,000 photos during her time in Italy.

A day at the shore, Italian style. Photo by Kim Harding

Each year, the Center for Global Education (CGE) sponsors a photo contest that gives students who have studied abroad over the past academic year an opportunity to submit any photo they took on their trip.  This year, CGE selected four winners out of the 46 photos submitted.

Jennifer Miller, a senior global and community health major in the College of Health and Human Services, was the subject of a winning photo taken in the Philippines last summer. Her friend got the inspiration for the photo from an information board at an overlook that featured creative poses. Miller, who was participating in Grassroots Peacebuilding, Environmental Issues and Culture in the Philippines, “leaned” on one of the Chocolate Hills in Bohol for the photo.

Jennifer Miller in the Philippines. Photo courtesy of Jennifer Miller

While studying in Florence last spring, Molly Snyder, a senior majoring in art history, took the third winning photograph.

Snyder says she visited San Miniato al Monte, a basilica near the Piazzale Michelangelo, on a class field trip. She later returned to take this photo, which frames the Dumo Cathedral.

Florence’s Duomo Cathedral viewed from San Miniato. Photo by Molly Snyder

The final winning photograph was taken last winter by senior Jacob van der Veen, also an integrative studies major. He was in Costa Rica during the Natural History and Conservation  program.

Again, the photographer was rewarded by luck. Van der Veen had set up his tripod on the beach to catch the sunset when he saw a man chasing two runaway horses. He shot the photo as one of the horses ran past.

A runaway horse on the beach in Costa Rica. Photo by Jacob van der Veen

This year’s winners will be officially recognized at the CGE’s Pre-Departure Orientation on Dec. 8.

For more information about the photo contest or studying abroad opportunities, see the website.

Write to Robin Herron at

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