YOU NEED TO KNOW: Elizabeth Scarborough
Meet Elizabeth Scarborough, global programs support specialist for the College of Agriculture. The Office of Global Programs advances international programs within the college, the Alabama Agricultural Experiment Station and the Alabama Cooperative Extension System. The global programs team also strives to promote an expanded worldview among ag students through study abroad opportunities and articulation agreements, faculty and student exchanges, technical training and international research and outreach project development. Scarborough graduated from Auburn in 1997 with an undergraduate degree in elementary education, and earned her master’s of public administration from the University of Alabama at Birmingham in 2000. Outside work, she enjoys spending time with her husband and three children, Truett, Reed and Reagan. She also has a passion for traveling, and she and her husband make it a priority to spend time traveling together.
What drew you to Auburn University and the College of Agriculture?
I’m a third generation Auburn graduate so I grew up knowing that I would go to school at Auburn. I didn’t even apply anywhere else. I’ve had a season football ticket every year since I was two, so I was lucky enough to come to all of the games when I was little. I remember sliding down the hill behind Parker Hall on cardboard boxes and exploring Dudley Hall and Goodwin Music Hall and just knowing that I would be an Auburn student one day.
I’ve always felt a close connection to the College of Agriculture. My grandfather, uncle and cousin all graduated from the College of Ag so even though I don’t have a typical ag background, I feel very connected to the college. My grandfather graduated from Auburn’s College of Agriculture in 1935 and he had classes in Comer Hall where my office is now. Even though he isn’t with us any more, I still feel a connection to him knowing that I’m walking the same halls that he walked when he was a student here.
What sparked your interest in global programs?
My love for travel definitely sparked my interest in global programs. Seeing the world around us helps us to gain new perspectives and makes the world a much smaller place, so being able to help facilitate travel for our students and faculty really appealed to me. Since I have been in this position I have had the opportunity to work with so many wonderful people. I get to interact with our students (both domestic and international), our faculty and our visiting scholars. Each group has their own unique needs, and being able to help them is really exciting to me.
What advice do you have for a student wanting to study abroad?
Start planning early! The College of Agriculture has some amazing resources to help facilitate student mobility, and I would encourage all of our students to take advantage of them. We offer a study abroad scholarship that is designed to defray the cost of a study abroad trip. The application is quick and easy, and it’s not too late to apply. Applications will be accepted until February 5. Students can apply at http://agriculture.auburn.edu/academics/study-abroad/study-abroad-scholarship/. I would also encourage students to identify a couple of trips that they would be interested in rather than just one trip. Sometimes, for various reasons, a particular study abroad trip won’t take place, so if a student already has a couple trips they are interested in identified, they can move on to their second choice. But most of all, I would tell the students to just go! Where you go isn’t important; simply going is what’s important. Mark Twain said it best, “Twenty years from now, you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the things you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.”
What is your favorite Auburn tradition?
Tailgating! I love to tailgate. To me there is nothing better than being on our gorgeous campus on a beautiful fall day surrounded by friends and family. Good company, great food, people watching and cries of “War Eagle”– what’s not to love?