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For Emma Smith and Dayton DiSalvo, the chance to study abroad was not just about augmenting their schooling, it was about gaining life experience.

Both are students in the Bachelor of Law Enforcement Studies program at the Justice Institute of British Columbia (JIBC).  Upon receiving the Irving K. Barber One World International Scholarship and additional financial support from The JIBC Foundation, they participated in an exchange program where they studied at the University of Portsmouth in the UK for a semester.

“I have always wanted to study abroad, although I did not want to take time off my studies at JIBC,” said Dayton. “This opportunity allowed me to study abroad, and work towards my degree at JIBC and was affordable.”

They took courses in forensic science, youth probation and crime scene management.

“There were many things that Canada and England practise similarly, and many in which the two countries differ which I was able to bring back and share with my fellow Canadian classmates,” said Emma.

This opportunity allowed me to study abroad, and work towards my degree at JIBC and was affordable

In addition to their studies, the proximity to the continent allowed both of them to travel around Europe. During a three-week break from classes, Dayton ventured even further, flying to western Africa to do volunteer work in Ghana. 

Emma appreciated the opportunity to live on her own during her stay overseas. 

“I gained some valuable life experience by living alone in a different country,” she said. “Living alone is something that I would have struggled to do at this age by living in North Vancouver, as the cost of living is so high. Life experience … is an important asset for me in pursuing a future career in law enforcement.”

Dayton agreed the experience can only make him a better candidate when he applies for a law enforcement career. Living in a different country came with its own challenges but enabled him to see a different culture and education system, and a new style of learning.

“Travelling always helps me grow as a person,” said Dayton. “In this case, I gained confidence in my academic abilities, experienced different cultures, and met many incredible people ... The scholarship, experience, and academic success in a foreign country will definitely be an asset to my resume.”

For more information visit the Bachelor of Law Enforcement Studies program page. Students in the program interested in more information about JIBC exchange opportunities are encouraged to contact their program representative.