Oh, the Places You'll Go!

View from plane windowThe study abroad application deadline for Spring 2018 is October 27! We talked with the Study Abroad Office about the opportunities available to UIC Business students and the information you should know as you decide to apply.  
The highly motivated students at UIC Business are often understandably nervous to miss a semester of classes on campus. It’s important to know that studying abroad does not extend your graduation date. In fact, UIC students who study abroad have, on average, even higher 4 and 5 years graduation rates than the campus as a whole.  Read on for more insight to consider when thinking about a study abroad program and how it can enrich your student experience.

While not required, most students who study abroad are able to take classes that transfer for credits in their major. During the application process, a UIC Business adviser will make sure your chosen program credits will transfer for the necessary requirements. 
If you’re interested in studying in a non-English speaking country, many programs do not have advanced language requirements.  The study abroad office staff can talk you through any program prerequisites. 
Studying abroad does not have to cost more than being a full-time student at UIC with a meal plan. And for all UIC students, your financial aid travels with you for study abroad, which means you can apply your normal aid to a study abroad program. In addition, the UIC Study Abroad Office has a huge scholarship portfolio, with awards available for different kinds of students and program locations. Study Abroad Office staff can help identify the best scholarship opportunities for you personally.  The Study Abroad Office also has a liaison in the university financial aid office, so you’ll have a point person every step of the way.
UIC Study Abroad is teaming up with the Council on International Educational Exchange to give UIC students who are first-time passport applicants a free U.S. Passport. Visit the website for necessary application materials and instructions.  
Programs Available
It’s safe to say that there is a study abroad program that can match any UIC student’s interests, major and ideal destination. To get started, there is a search tool on the Study Abroad site where you can explore program options.
Listed below is a sampling of programs that might be of interest to UIC Business students, specializing in coursework and experiential learning in business fields. To explore options further, contact the Study Abroad office directly.
  • Emerging Economies - The IES Emerging Economies: Buenos Aires & Santiago program examines globalization and economic growth in these cities.  The coursework focuses on practical application of concepts that includes a mock consulting project and conversations with local business organizations and professionals.
  • Multiple Locations - Consider the CIEE Open Campus Program that allows you to customize your experience with your interests and degree requirements. Through this program, UIC Business students can choose two or three cities to live in over the semester with courses available in five different tracks. The CIEE open campus program offers locations in Berlin, Cape Town, London, Madrid, Paris and Rome.
  • Graduate Programs – For graduate students, UIC Business offers a two-week course in Sao Paulo, Brazil and a four-week course traveling in five cities in Europe. Both programs tackle contemporary business issues and offer meetings with professionals from across the world. 
  • Internship Experience - If you’re looking to gain internship experience in addition to academic credit during your semester abroad, there are many programs specifically designed to place students in positions.  One of these programs, SAO Business, International Relations and Spanish at the University of Deusto offers coursework focusing on international business and for-credit internships in Bilbao, Spain. 
  • Field Specific – Programs are available that focus courses and learning experiences in specific fields.  Popular choices include Fashion Merchandising and Sports Marketing.


Setting yourself apart
The experiences and skills gained studying abroad will help set you apart for future employers.  With only 2 percent of college graduates nationwide studying abroad, your experience can tell a unique story for hiring managers.  In addition, a national survey, by NACE Center for Career Development and Talent Acquisition, of top employers found that excellent communication skills and adaptability rank highly among desired skills for new hires.  Therefore, a study abroad semester not only will allow you to improve those skills, but will also help you convey them on your resume.

Next steps
Attend a First Step Advising session with the UIC Study Abroad Office to learn about the application process and ask questions.  Bon Voyage!
For more information, visit the UIC Study Abroad Office website and read our  interview with a UIC Business student about his study abroad experience.