The recent creation of the Barker Globalization Institute, made possible through the generous donation of Robert ’72 and Suzanne Barker, has prompted numerous initiatives on Gannon's campus that are inspired by worldview development and travel. One recent initiative is taking the University's traditional faculty-led trips to the next level by concentrating on both academics and accessibility. The Gannon: Inspired Faculty-Led Travel (GIFT) program is focused on the development of new faculty-led travel courses and providing greater support for existing programs.
Through the GIFT program, faculty members who are continuing existing trips will be provided with a $5,000 scholarship pool to be divided equally amongst the participating students eligible for Learning Abroad Scholarship awards. Faculty interested in developing new academically based, credit-bearing travel courses can apply for a $1,000 grant per faculty facilitator to take an exploratory visit to their intended destination to become familiar with the location, lodging, transportation and logistics, and to develop curricular connections and collaborations.
The available funding for the 2014-15 Academic Year supports two new programs and six existing travel courses, which include: Catholic social teaching in Immokalee, Fla., marine biology on San Salvador Island, software engineering in Sweden, Leadership Seminar in Thailand, occupational therapy in India, and biology at the Yellowstone National Park.