Office of Study Abroad and Study Away Programs

Dear Parents

You may already know that studying abroad can be a "life-changing experience." It is also an important component of a comprensive liberal arts education. Like any such academic experience, it requires careful planning and invites a wide range of questions.

We have designed these pages with parents in mind. You may be wondering about what is an appropriate level of involement, and how you can be informed. You may be concerned about health and safety overseas. We have tried to provide as much information as possible on our policies and procedures, as well as resources for you to use throughout the study abroad process.

Our Mission Statement

"The Office of Study Abroad Programs works to enhance Clark University's mission of educating students to become imaginative and contributing citizens of the world. With today's increasingly global society and international approaches to humanistic studies, the arts, economics, the sciences, government, and many professions, studying abroad has become an important component of a liberal arts education. Immersion in different cultures by means of academically focused programs enables students to become active and creative learners, whether acquiring mastery of a foreign language or conducting research and field projects overseas. Study abroad also contributes to the international character of Clark University. The academic emphasis of Clark's study abroad programs provides our students with the opportunity to extend Clark's classrooms beyond the Clark campus, to augment the curriculum, and to acquire different perspectives--the hallmark prerequisite for the active and fertile exchange of ideas."

What We Do

The Study Abroad Programs Office handles all elements of the study abroad process, from advising students during pre-departure to facilitating their return. A list of our duties includes: developing programs; working with faculty and staff at Clark; holding informational meetings; advising individual students on each program; conducting pre-departure orientations; communicating with overseas staff; arranging finances; monitoring safety and health concerns; translating overseas transcripts; and conducting returned student meetings. In many ways, the entire process is reflective of the college academic experience. Thus, beginning early is crucial.

What We Don't Do

We are not a travel agency.  We do not book travel for students directly or faciliatate or arrange non-Clark study or trave abrad.

Clark does not directly administer any of its programs on site. As such, although we manage the relationships with overseas partners and maintain quality control, we are often not the first point of contact for issues abroad.

What is a Study Abroad Program at Clark University?

At Clark, we believe in study abroad programs that strengthen undergraduate education in three interrelated ways: they enhance an academic program or major field of study through different perspectives and active learning; they help advance language skills; and they contribute to cross-cultural understanding and skill-building.

Clark University offers over fifty semester or yearlong study abroad programs, as well as a short-term program, Leir Luxembourg program, which is administered by a separate office. These programs were developed in conjunction with organizations, universities and faculty members around the world.

Clark requires that students declare a major before applying for a program, meaning that most students study abroad during their junior year. Studying abroad takes careful, advance planning - students undertake a study abroad program under consultation with their major faculty advisor, a faculty member who is familiar with their Clark academic program and our office.

Students also have the opportunity to study abroad on an outside Non-Clark or Summer Program. Students should request a copy of the Guidelines to Non-Clark and Summer Study Abroad Programs.

From pre-departure to return, encourage your son or daughter to seek out our staff and student ambassadors to get answers to questions.


Office of Study Abroad