Learning Abroad and Away

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During your time as a UMN student, you have access to literally hundreds of opportunities to study, volunteer, and/or intern either around the world or elsewhere here in the United States.

It’s almost impossible to fully articulate the many benefits of these learning abroad and learning away opportunities, but know that among them is the chance to further develop many of the Core Career Competencies that signify career readiness. Among them:

  • Applied Problem Solving
  • Innovation & Creativity
  • Engaging Diversity

At the same time, you will also gather critical experiences that will help you demonstrate your career readiness later—to prospective employers, for example, or to graduate/professional school admissions committees. Learn more about how studying abroad can help with your career readiness.

Participating in Learning Abroad

Search for learning abroad programs by location, major, term, and program features including internships and research. There you’ll find information on more than 300 international and domestic study programs in more than 80 countries.

As you get ideas for programs, you will also need to complete an online profile as well as a "First Step" session. You can attend a "First Step" session in person (one is offered every day of the week) or do a "First Step" module online. Once you’ve completed these two steps, you can make an appointment with a program selection advisor for additional guidance.

Experiences can vary from lasting a few weeks to going on for as long as a year. 

Costs vary as well, depending on the length of the program and location. But know that there are a lot of cost-effective options available that are comparable to what you pay for tuition, room, and board on campus. Know, too, that financial aid is applicable to many programs abroad, and that a wide range of scholarships exists as well.

Funding Available for Learning Abroad Experiences That Include a Research Project

The International Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program (I-UROP) Scholarship is designed to promote learning abroad opportunities to UMN undergraduates by providing critical funding to students enrolled in select credit-bearing learning abroad programs involving a research project. Be sure to check it out!

Participating in Learning Away

Maybe you don’t (or don’t yet) want to study in another country, but you’d still like to leave the UMN campus to pursue a learning adventure that offers you valuable experience. 

The National Student Exchange program allows you to study at another school in the United States or Canada for a semester or a year. You can choose from almost 200 schools and access many new classes while you’re still earning credit toward your degree here at the U.

If you would instead like to pursue something closer to or in the Twin Cities, there are a couple of additional learning away options you can explore:

  • The Higher Education Consortium for Urban Affairs (HECUA) program, which offers semester-long programs based in the Twin Cities. These programs combine courses, volunteer work, and an internship and focus on the environment, the arts, civil rights, and other topics.
  • Philosophy Camp, a four-week summer class that offers a unique living-and-learning experience on the Minnesota prairie.

Internships Abroad

Completing an internship abroad can deepen your cross-cultural understanding and help you better understand daily work life in another country. While there are a few additional requirements in the learning abroad application process to do an internship, onsite staff will place you at a site that meets your interests so you don’t have to find it on your own. Internships are available in a wide variety of industries and areas, and placements are available for students in any major.  

Learn more frequently asked questions and see what internships are available. In the “Program Features” filter, search “Internships” with your area of interest. CLA students frequently participate in internships in cities like Madrid, Florence, London, Rome, Dublin, Montpellier, and more!