SUNY Oswego expands study abroad program

Submitted by SUNY Oswego

SUNY Oswego has signed on with the newly launched Generation Study Abroad program, agreeing to increase the college’s participation in study-abroad opportunities to 20 percent of undergraduates by 2019.

Citing the challenges of rapid globalization, the Institute of International Education announced the five-year Generation Study Abroad in early March.

Its ambitious goal: bringing leaders in education, business and government together to double study-abroad participation nationally, reaching 600,000 students by the end of the decade.

Oswego joined 150 colleges in 41 states as early partners in the effort, including large universities such as Cornell, Ohio State, Texas A&M and Purdue, as well as four other SUNY colleges and universities.

Joshua McKeown, Oswego’s director of international education and programs, said the help of new short-term options for study-travel, the Global Laboratory summer-research program and other initiatives have increased participation in the last five years to 15 percent of the college’s undergraduates from about 5 percent, and Oswego is poised to make the next move upward.

The college has sent students to 40 countries the past seven years, from Argentina to United Kingdom to Mexico to China.

“We recently made the top 10 list nationally (in Institute of International Education’s Open Doors report) for master’s level study abroad enrollments, regularly are at or near the top rank for SUNY comprehensive college study abroad enrollments, and were cited by the Middle States reaccreditation team for our international programs,” McKeown said.

The Institute of International Education found in its annual study conducted with the State Department’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs that with 295,000 students in credit and non-credit programs abroad in 2011-12, less than 10 percent of U.S. college students participate.

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