Higher ed leaders agreed that focused time, attention and financial investment in study abroad programs are the leading factors in their universities’ growth and success. When campuses provide robust academic programs and continue to expand the opportunities, students become as invested in getting a global education.
“One of the reasons Elon has remained strong in study abroad is due to our institutional culture,” Gozik said. “Students list study abroad as one of the top reasons they come to Elon. Our institution has invested significantly in making sure that funding is available for study away programs through grants and scholarships, many of which are made possible by alumni, parents, and current students.”
Moreover, almost 100% of the universities listed in the U.S. News & World Report’s top 25 for study abroad programs appear to have a separate center on campus dedicated specifically to study abroad and international education programs. A center focused solely on study abroad programs gives universities the resources that they need to grow and expand their research.
U.S. News & World Report ranked New York University, Middlebury College and Agnes Scott College among the top colleges offering robust study abroad programs. Study abroad programs in higher education have long been part of the university experience in the United States, both for their ability to enrich a student’s life and academics and for the diversity of culture and thought that the programs bring to a campus. A truly immersive program is one that requires intensive interaction between the student and a new culture, including opportunities for students to socialize with locals, learn the language and receive a quality academic education.
“Through language and cultural immersion, a global curriculum on campus and abroad, as well as the integration of international scholars and students into our community, the center collaborates across the college’s divisions, academic departments and programs, as well as with Dickinson centers and partner institutions abroad, to promote inclusion, academic excellence and an intercultural dimension of lifelong learning,” Torres said. “I believe it is this strong commitment that has enabled Dickinson to continue to be a leader within the education abroad community and to provide exceptionally high quality programs for its students.”