OSU Students Grounded Along With Boeing 737 MAX Aircraft
Less than 24 hours before OSU students take fight on a study abroad trip to the Galápagos Islands, they were grounded along with 737 MAX aircraft that were taken out of service by the FAA.
The trip costs $5,000 per student. There were 13 students going on the trip. That adds up to about $65,000 - and it's a trip students have been planning for the last five months. While they are hopeful for a refund, some are already trying to plan next year's trip.
OSU Junior Ginifer O'Bryan's bags were packed and ready to go on a nearly 10-day trip to the Galápagos Islands.
"I was really looking forward to snorkeling with penguins and dolphins and all the fun Marine life and the blue-footed boobies," said junior Ginifer O'Bryan, studying Animal Science.
The trip is now cancelled after the FAA grounded 737 Max Series over safety concerns.
"It's very frustrating, but honestly the safety of the students and other passengers is more important than any trip. It can be redone," said junior Ginifer O'Bryan, an Animal Science major.
Dr. Tom Kuzmic said students were going to experience living on a boat and learning about plants, animals and much more.
"They had their hearts and souls invested in this experience for about the last five months and to have the plug pulled so to speak yesterday afternoon is a pretty tough thing," said Dr. Tom Kuzmic, a Professor of Forestry.
Kuzmic said it was frustrating learning about the cancellation and he and the administration are working hard to try and get the students refunds. In the meantime, Ginifer said she and some of her classmates are looking forward to next year.
"Going to see exotic animals would be beyond my wildest dreams," said O'Bryan.
"I will make a next year happen - it's gonna happen" said Dr. Kuzmic.
When Dr. Kuzmic said when he called American, customer service had 2,000 people on hold for re-booking.