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New minor comes to Louisiana Tech

Posted: Updated: Oct 8, 2012 02:59 PM

RUSTON, La. (KNOE 8 News) - Louisiana Tech students now have the option of minoring in a field that looks at the global economy.

The international studies minor is open to any student who wishes to prepare to compete in a global marketplace. Dr. Don Kaczvinsky, dean of the College of Liberal Arts, said this minor will help students gain a broader and richer perspective of problems in the 21st century.

"The international studies minor was started to offer students a means to understand the issues and concerns in today's global culture," Kaczvinsky said. "We want students to see how countries and people are interconnected."

Dr. Paul Nelson, the program coordinator, said this new 21-hour minor could help students in a variety of majors.

"It helps give students a competitive edge in the global economy," Nelson said. "They'll already have a notion of the world."

One of the requirements of the international studies minor is six hours in the study abroad program.

 "If students want to work abroad and they have an international studies minor, and they are against someone who hadn't lived abroad, this would give them a competitive edge," Nelson said. "Students have firsthand knowledge of the world because they have been abroad and worked with a foreign language."

Nelson said an international studies minor was a developing movement.

"This is a growing trend modeled on many European universities," Nelson said. "Many European programs send their students abroad before graduation. It introduces them to the world and broadens the scope of their education."

Kaczvinsky said nine of the required hours come from a variety of courses approved for the international education requirements that students may have already taken or planned to take.

"The minor will help students in whatever field they choose, for as we have seen in recent years no one, and certainly no country, exists in isolation," Kaczvinsky said. "In order to understand problems in the United States -- environmental problems, say, or economic markets -- you must also understand what is happening in Europe or China or India."

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