Why should I participate in education abroad?
Education abroad encompasses traditional study abroad, international internships and research, embedded courses, and service learning. Penn State designs education abroad programs to give you experiences with other cultures and radically alter your sense of the world as a whole. It’s one of the best things you can do for your career. While abroad, many students report:
- Improvements to their second language skills
- Increased critical thinking skills in a global context
- New found confidence in their personal and professional selves
Additionally, Communication Arts and Sciences students say education abroad helped them understand the English language and its multiple world dialects from an international perspective. Comparative perspectives and experiences allowed them to place communication and language in a much larger and more diverse context.
Are there any department-specific education abroad opportunities?
YES! For summer 2024, three faculty in the Department of Communication Arts and Sciences are offering a program in Ireland called “The Culture of Deliberative Democracy in Ireland.” Through readings, lectures, a 3-week tour of the country, and interviews with citizens and legislators, students will develop an understanding and point of view of the significance of deliberation as instrumental to political, cultural, and constitutional change. Working in groups, students will articulate their understanding through 12-15-minute documentaries.
What steps do I need to take to participate in education abroad?
Communication Arts and Sciences students can study abroad at any time during their four years, but the faculty highly recommend that you do so before your senior year. With proper planning, going abroad can help you prepare for your professional life in a global context.
Penn State Global has put together a step-by-step guide on how to study abroad that we recommend all students follow.
Can I afford to go abroad?
YES! Early planning for education abroad helps you make cost-effective program decisions, and it also helps you prepare your finances through savings, scholarships, and financial aid. Financial aid applies to study abroad and, in some cases, your eligibility will increase to cover additional expenses. When comparing costs, note that program fees often cover full-time tuition, housing, and most meals. Some programs actually cost less than enrollment at the University!
Penn State does offer scholarships for abroad students, and here’s something to keep in mind: MILLIONS of dollars in grants and scholarships go unused because no one has applied. Funding is available, but it will take some time to discover! Penn State Global provides resources on these and a variety of other scholarships available to undergraduate students.