Collegiate & Departmental Programs
Collegiate & Departmental Program Leader Information
What is a Collegiate & Departmental Program?
Collegiate & Departmental programs are study abroad programs led and coordinated by faculty and staff from colleges or departments at the University of Minnesota. Through this option, the Learning Abroad Center provides essential support services while allowing leaders to design their own programs.
Collegiate & Departmental programs may have some of the following features:
- Short-term (Winter Break, May Session, Summer) or long-term (Fall or Spring semester)
- Designed around a particular theme or topic
- May be discipline-specific or cross-disciplinary
- Prerequisites determined by program leader and based on the course content
- Recommended maximum enrollment of 25 students per program leader
Collegiate & Departmental Programs work well for leaders who:
- Prefer to design a discipline-specific program for a particular population of students
- Have specific academic pre-requisites that students must meet
- Have a specific geographic location in mind
Collegiate & Departmental Programs work well for students who:
- Want an in-depth experience in their major
- Can't be away for a full semester (e.g. athletes, certain majors, etc.)
- Are freshmen as a first experience abroad
- Are graduating seniors who want a capstone experience
The Program Leader Experience
Collegiate & Departmental program leaders work closely with a small group of students in an overseas setting and share experiences that students gain from the program.
Prior to program departure, program leaders coordinate all aspects of study abroad program administration including budget development, marketing and promotion, participant selection and on-site logistics (hotel arrangements, transportation, organizing excursions, etc).
The Learning Abroad Center is available to assist with resources and program design recommendations. The program leader's salary is paid by their department, college or by the students on the program as part of the program fee.
Courses are structured by the program leader, and can be for undergraduates, graduates, or both. All learning abroad programs must have the same academic rigor as courses taught on campus. Course content, credit, required excursions, and prerequisites are all determined by the program leader and must be approved by the program leader's department and/or college.
Programs should also contain some of the following activities; pre-departure orientation, preparatory readings, on-site orientations and excursions that are related to the academic content. In addition, field assignments are an important component of active learning and leaders should consider including different types of structured activities to enhance student learning.
Learning Abroad Center Support
The Learning Abroad Center provides support for custom programs by offering a variety of services including:
- Program fee billing
- Course registration
- Student and program leader international health insurance
- Online pre-departure orientation
- 24-hour emergency support
- Budget development assistance
- Program design assistance
- Visa resources
- Promotion on the Learning Abroad Center's website
Student Application Process
Collegiate & Departmental program leaders are responsible for screening and accepting program participants. All applicants must complete:
- Learning Abroad Center On-line Application
- Release and Waiver
- Health Information Form
- Confirmation Payment and Agreement
- Transcript Request Form (non-U of M students only)
In addition, the program leader may request additional materials if desired, such as an application essay or transcript. Once participants are selected, the program leader notifies the Learning Abroad Center to facilitate billing, registration and enrollment of students in the mandatory online pre-departure orientation.
For more information, or to begin the process of creating a program, contact one of the Learning Abroad Center staff members listed below.
Zach Mohs: College of Liberal Arts
Shelly Fisher: College of Design
Vanessa Walton: College of Education and Human Development; School of Nursing; Academic Health Center; College of Continuing Education; College of Biological Sciences
Sarah Reuben: College of Science and Engineering; College of Food, Agricultural, and Natural Resource Sciences
We also ask that you complete and submit the U-Led Proposal and Information Form.
Finally, the Learning Abroad Center has recommended timelines for all terms to allow leaders time to plan the program, recruit students and manage logistics in a timely manner. You can find more detailed information on timelines by viewing our Program Timelines and Responsibilities document.
Forms and Resources are available for your planning and information needs. These include the Program Leader Handbook, articles on leading programs abroad, a list of suggested on-site providers, international insurance coverage, and much more.