Students who have studied, worked, and lived abroad receive a unique educational experience. There is much more to studying abroad than just taking classes in a foreign country. An experience abroad can open doors to new opportunities, new friends, and new career paths. And, it will give you a global perspective and cross-cultural competence which are crucial for success in today’s world.
Think you can't afford it? There are many resources both at the University of Michigan and at outside foundations to help you make studying or working abroad a possibility. Please see the CGIS website for more information about funding sources for study abroad.
Study Abroad FAQ's
I want to study abroad! Where do I start?
The best place to start is the Center for Global and Intercultural Study (CGIS) which is located in Suite 200, Weiser Hall. Their First Step sessions held every Monday through Friday from 5-5:30pm (fall and winter terms) are a great way to get basic questions answered.
Do study abroad credits transfer automatically?
It depends on which program you have chosen. If it is a UM-affiliated program—one that CGIS lists as being approved—then the credits usually do transfer automatically. Always double-check this with CGIS, though. Otherwise, students should speak to their general advisor about the transfer credit process for study abroad course work. Are you an LS&A student? Then check out the LS&A Transfer Credit page to help answer any preliminary questions you might have.
Do I go through MES to transfer my credits from study abroad?
No. MES does not play a role in the transfer credit process unless the offices that are in charge ask us to help evaluate a course’s content. Students should plan to talk to their general advisors about transferring credits and the paperwork involved.
Completing a Middle East Studies Internship
Students who complete an internship focused on Middle East studies are eligible for 1 academic credit by enrolling in the independent study course MIDEAST 396: Internship in Middle East Studies. Students may enroll in any term, but preferably when they will be working on and completing their internship experience.
MIDEAST 396: Internship in Middle East Studies
To enroll in MIDEAST 396, students need to submit a proposal to the MES Student Services Assistant no later than two weeks before the start of the term in which they will enroll. The two-page proposal should outline where the student will be completing the internship, the contact information for a supervisor, their anticipated work schedule/hours dedicated to the internship, how this experience will compliment his/her studies, and at least one research question the student seeks to answer by the experience. This proposal will be shared with the MES Director of Undergraduate Studies who will either approve or deny the request for academic credit.
If approved, the student will be required to keep a reflection journal of no less than ten 600-word entries. The journal may take various forms, i.e. a Word document, blog, etc. The journal entries should address related experiences that are helping the student answer his/her proposed research question. Upon completion of the internship, the student will submit an 8-page, double-spaced paper to the Director of Undergraduate Studies. This paper should reflect on the experience and offer conclusions regarding the research question and/or avenues for further study.
Upon successful completion of MIDEAST 396, students may petition a department advisor to use the credit towards a Middle East Studies major. MIDEAST 396 credit is not permitted towards a Middle East Languages and Cultures minor. Students are not permitted to retro-actively receive credit for an internship that has already been completed.
The LSA Opportunity Hub is a valuable resource for LSA students looking to find internships and secure funding to support an internship experience. The Hub provides support, mentorship, and resources regarding internships, global opportunities, career preparation, and funding.
The Career Center is another great resource for LSA students looking to explore internship opportunities. Their website offers information on internship openings, job fairs and events, and The Public Service Intern Program. For students who are unsure about where to begin, the Career Center offers tools on how to start your research. The Center is also available for in-person appointments for career advising and counseling.