While many of you may desire to go “abroad” to another country, we also recommend that you consider domestic off-campus programs focused on your particular area of study. There are many programs in this category, including traditional academic semesters like Earlham College’s Border Studies program in Tucson, AZ and internship programs at the United Nations or State Department.
We consider an off-campus program, such as a study abroad program or a domestic program focused on your area of study, to be an especially crucial element of your major. With few exceptions, our students participate in an off-campus programs, for a minimum of a semester, and in some cases, a whole year. We try to make it easy for you to fulfill your major requirements through such programs by accepting up to one-half of the credits toward your major as transfer credits.
An Opportunity for Growth
Global studies major Kenny Nguyen ’15 reflected on his study abroad experience in Spain: “Adapting to new situations is a great opportunity to grow. I've learned a lot about myself and how to assimilate into a new culture and new language. It took some time, but with every success, there has to be some sort of struggle. As a global studies student, I strive to leave a profound mark wherever I am in order to improve the world, somehow, because I want to inspire people and make them think twice about their everyday actions."
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Planning for Study Abroad: When to Go
As long as you have a minimum 2.5 cumulative GPA, sophomore status, and good social standing at the university, UVM will grant you permission to study abroad. Most students go during their third year. A handful go during their sophomore year, and others their senior year, but remember that the university requires you to take 30 of your last 45 credit hours at UVM.
Keep in mind that some courses required for your major and/or minor might be offered only during certain semesters. Plan out your major and/or minor in advance, and consider how study abroad will help fulfill those requirements.
In order to study abroad, you must attend an information session and meet with a study abroad advisor at the Office of International Education (OIE). You should also meet with your academic advisor as early in your planning as possible to discuss programs, the application process, and your plan for completing the major or minor.
Different programs have different prerequisites, which may include language and certain specialized coursework. Be very clear about what you need for your desired program and prioritize those courses in semesters leading up to the time you want to be abroad. Some programs also have minimum GPA requirements.