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Doors open wider for overseas travel

Wake Forest ranks third in study abroad in national report

By Kim McGrath Office of Communications and External Relations
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Wake Forest University ranks third among doctoral U.S. colleges and universities in number of students studying abroad, according to the Open Doors report recently published by the Institute of International Education (IIE).

According to the IIEs methodology, 72 percent of Wake Forest undergraduates received credit for study abroad in the 2010-2011 academic year, with students spending anywhere from a few weeks to a summer to a full academic year visiting countries around the world.

The University, ranked sixth in 2009-2010, jumped three positions.

“Wake Forest has made a clear commitment to increase the number of scholarships available for students studying abroad,” said Associate Provost of Global Affairs Kline Harrison. “In particular, we are working hard to bridge the gap between the amount of money a student raises through other University scholarships, departmental funding, or their own initiatives and the amount of money they need — particularly when this is the first opportunity a student has had to travel abroad.”

In addition to increasing funds available for overseas study, Harrison said there has been a concerted effort to work with faculty to streamline the process for developing summer courses that include a cross-cultural experience.

Opportunities for short-term study abroad are also increasing as faculty include week-long travel opportunities in their courses that take advantage of spring or winter academic breaks.

Another new initiative: training and planning assistance is available to support faculty who want to lead an overseas program as part of their course but are unfamiliar with the process.

Wake Forest offers more than 400 semester, summer and year-long study abroad programs in 200 cities in more than 70 countries worldwide. These programs have challenging coursework, and many have opportunities for internships, field study, independent research, language partnerships, community service, organized group excursions and personal travel.

Harrison said the Wake Forest University Center for International Studies does an outstanding job getting the word out about the wide range of study abroad opportunities available.

“We wouldn’t have the study abroad numbers that we do without our staff of experts who work with students to find the opportunities for overseas travel that match their academic needs and their personal interests.”

“When I was looking for an abroad program, I knew that it had to be in the summer and it had to offer business school credit,” said finance major Amy DeSalvo. “I found several programs that fit my requirements, and eventually chose one that allowed me to study in several countries that I always wanted to visit. The many opportunities at Wake Forest allow students of any grade, major, or financial status to find a program that’s a perfect fit.”

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