Office of International Programs and Services

Study Abroad

Study Abroad - Exchange Programs

 

There's a whole world out there waiting to be explored! Discover what it has in store for you by studying abroad. WCU's study abroad opportunities range from a few weeks in the summer to a semester or a full year overseas. 

The Study Abroad Office is here to help you navigate along the way as you familiarize yourself with the eligibility requirements, application deadlines, fees and program options below.

Funding your Study Abroad isn't out of reach. We can find a program to fit almost any budget! Learn more at fund your study abroad here

Once you've found a few programs that interest you, contact us at studyabroad@wcu.edu to get started.

There are 6 Ways to Study Abroad at WCU...

A bilateral exchange is when a student from Western attends a partner university abroad and in turn, they send a student to study here in Cullowhee.

With this type of exchange, you pay your tuition and fees to WCU and your room and board to your host university. Additional costs include flight, mandatory travel health insurance and miscellaneous expenses such as books, lab fees, social activities, etc.

To apply for a bilateral exchange you must first be approved by the Study Abroad Office. Once approved, you will then be given the partner university's application to complete. Feel free to contact us with any questions, or to start your journey...

Explore our current Bilateral Exchange Partners 

A Faculty-Led Travel Course refers to a short-term study abroad program led by a Western Carolina University Faculty member in an international setting for anywhere between one to eight weeks. You'll earn course credit, experience life abroad and build lifelong relationships with fellow students. and after completing a Faculty-Led Travel Course, many students pursue a study abroad exchange.

You may also see Faculty-Led Courses referred to as Faculty-Led Study Abroad, but do note that these courses are different from a Study Abroad Exchange, which is with another University and last between a semester and year.

Note: The application deadlines for Faculty-Led Travel Courses is different than other Study Abroad courses.

Explore the Current Faculty-Led Travel Courses

Building a global perspective and cross-cultural understanding gives you a unique advantage in today's job market. An internship or work experience abroad can help you appreciate the international dimensions of your field, broaden your career opportunities, develop first-hand knowledge of other cultures, broaden your perspectives on the American society, and improve foreign language abilities. 

We work with several third party study abroad providers that provide internship opportunities. Be sure to contact or visit Western's Center for Career and Professional Development to understand how internships work. You should also communicate with your academic advisor/department head so they can help you find the right fit for what your degree requires.

Contact the Study Abroad Advisor to explore any of these more deeply.

INTERNATIONAL STUDIES ABROAD 

CISABROAD

CIEE

CAPA: THE GLOBAL EDUCATION NETWORK

ACADEMIC PROGRAMS INTERNATIONAL

ASIA INTERNSHIP PROGRAM

CAREER UP

The International Student Exchange Program (ISEP) is a is a non-profit educational community made up of 328 colleges and universities in 54 countries around the world.

There are two ways to study abroad with ISEP: 

ISEP Exchange

With ISEP Exchange, you swap spots with a student from an ISEP university overseas. You get to pick up to ten schools you'd like to attend and ISEP will place you at the best option depending on the space and your academic needs. Space is limited and while you are guaranteed a spot in one of your ten chosen schools, the chance of placement at your top choice all depends on the pool of other exchange applicants.

You pay your tuition, fees, room and board to WCU and your host university provides you with housing and meals generally in the form of a stipendAdditional costs include flight, mandatory travel health insurance and miscellaneous expenses such as books, lab fees, social activities, etc.

ISEP Direct

Through ISEP Direct you enroll directly at the international university on a fee paying basis. With this, all competition for limited places is removed from the equation, leaving you with an excellent chance of placement at your top choice. All major costs are paid to ISEP, only the application fee is paid to WCU.

LEARN MORE AND EXPLORE THEIR OFFERINGS. 

Third party program providers are not administered or controlled by WCU's study abroad office and there is no exchange of students between institutions.

With this type of exchange, you pay your tuition, fees room and board to the Third Party Provider. Additional costs include flight, mandatory travel health insurance and miscellaneous expenses such as books, lab fees, social activities, etc.

To apply for study abroad you must first be approved by the Study Abroad Office, then you will need to complete the program provider's application.

Explore the list below of third party programs WCU Students have used previously:

International Studies Abroad (ISA)

Academic Programs International (API)

CIS Abroad

Classport

Knowledge Exchange Institute (KEI)

CIEE

SAI

Sol Education Abroad

CAPA: The Global Education Network

direct enrollment program is when a student from Western attends a partner university abroad.

Through direct enrollment, you pay tuition, fees, room and board to the partner university, rather than WCU. You'll also have additional costs for your flight, mandatory travel health insurance and some miscellaneous expenses such as books, lab fees, social activities, etc.

To apply for direct enrollment you must first be approved by the Study Abroad Office. Once approved, you will then be given the partner university's application to complete.

Curious? Explore the Direct Enrollment Universities and feel free to contact us with any questions, or to start your journey...

SPAIN'S ILYC LANGUAGE SCHOOL

UNC CHARLOTTE'S SEMESTER IN SPAIN AT THE UNIVERSITY OF CANTABRIA

ITALY'S LORENZO DI MEDICI INSTITUtE

JOHN CABOT UNIVERSITY IN ROME, ITALY

UNIVERSITY OF THE SUNSHINE COAST IN AUSTRALIA

UNC WILMINGTON'S SEMESTER IN ECUADOR AT THE UNIVERSIDAD SAN FRANCISCO DE QUITO

UNC WILMINGTON'S SEMESTER IN SWANSEA, WALES

FOYER INTERNATIONAL DES ETUDIANTES IN PARIS WITH UNC WILMINGTON

STELLENBOSCH UNIVERSITY IN SOUTH AFRICA

Eligibility

The following is required in order to be eligible to study abroad:

  • Complete a minimum of 30 credit hours
  • Maintain a GPA of 2.75 or higher
  • Remain in good academic standing

All Western students will apply to the Study Abroad Office for approval. The application process will vary depending on the type of program you choose and there is an application fee of $150. 

Next Steps 

Once you've found a few programs that interest you, review the Steps to Study Abroad and contact us at studyabroad@wcu.edu to get started.

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