If you haven’t already read Wendy Williamson’s article in the Chronicle, “7 Signs of Successful Study-Abroad Programs,” you should. Today’s students grew up surfing the world and most go to college expecting to have the opportunity to study in some of the places they discovered online, but as Ms. Williamson reminds us, few actually do. In this article, Ms. Williamson outlines seven signs to identify a “study-abroad-friendly” university: support from both the administration and the faculty, program variety, risk preparation and management, fair value and price, options for every department, opportunity for students to earn valuable credit, and a commitment to go green.
If you were to analyze your campus against these seven signs right now, how would your campus rate: study-abroad-friendly or not?
NAFSA recognizes that there are many campus-based challenges that affect study abroad and is continually working to help you address those barriers. That is why we have been working to advance the Senator Paul Simon Study Abroad Foundation Act. Though intended to be a federally funded national program to significantly increase study abroad participation, it is not intended to be a traditional grant program. It will be uniquely structured to help both you and your students achieve your study abroad goals. The program recognizes that many students need additional financial support to study abroad, but it also recognizes that institutions need leverage to address the barriers that all too often prevent students from going abroad. In the same way that every student is different, so is every campus.
What is the “Simon Vision” for your institution?