In so many ways, the 2011 Short-Term Semester at Sea voyage is a first: First short-term voyage. First to examine a central theme of quality of life as outlined by the U.N. Millennium Development Goals.
Launching a voyage focusing on some of the world‚Äôs most pressing problems, executive dean Rosalyn Berne welcomed the students at orientation with these challenging words.
‚ÄúYou have chosen to be part of a voyage called ‚ÄòEngineering a New Tomorrow,‚Äô‚Äù she said. ‚ÄúIf you are as your applications suggest and if you are as many of the new millennium generation have purported to be, then you‚Äôre actually wanting, deeply wanting, to be part of recreating the way humans live so we can not only survive but thrive in environmentally sustainable ways.¬† That‚Äôs a huge undertaking, and it‚Äôs serious.‚Äù
Voyagers‚Äô parents were invited onboard the MV Explorer for a bon voyage reception on Thursday, and they seemed just as excited as their children.
Randy Bonfiglio, whose daughter Brenna is on the Maymester voyage, said Brennna was captivated by Semester at Sea after hearing about it from a family friend.
‚ÄúFor six years, she‚Äôs been saying, ‚ÄòWhen I get to college, I‚Äôm going on Semester at Sea,‚Äô‚Äù he said. Brenna will also be going on the Summer ‚Äò11 voyage, which will visit eight Mediterranean countries in 66 days.
So it seems that the short-term voyage was the perfect fit for Brenna.
Now that the Maymester voyage is under way, here‚Äôs a look at it by the numbers:
Number of students: 340 (women out number men, 235 to 105)
Number of majors: 46 (ranging from engineering to linguistics to theater arts)
Most popular majors (top 10):
- Business administration
- Political science
- Environmental studies
- Communication arts
- International studies
- Biological sciences
Number of faculty and staff: 62
Total participants: 474
Number of universities represented: 186
Universities that sent the most students:
- University of Virginia, 32
- Western Kentucky, 9
- University of California, Berkeley, 8
- University of Colorado at Boulder and University of North Carolina Wilmington, 6 each
- Boston University, the Pennsylvania State University, and University of Arizona, 5 each.
University whose student traveled the farthest: Nanyang Technological University, Singapore
U.S states sending the most students (top 10):
- New Jersey
- New York
- North Carolina
- Maryland and Illinois (tie).
Countries represented: 17
Minority student enrollment: 23 percent