IU President Michael McRobbie has said that he would like each incoming student to arrive on campus with a passport in hand. His sentiments reflect this university’s long tradition of connecting the Bloomington campus to the world through the scholarship and service of our outstanding students. This tradition dates back to the tenure of revered former president and chancellor Herman B Wells, who greatly expanded opportunities for students to spend time abroad as part of their Indiana University educational experience. Wells believed that our graduates should be not only top-notch scholars, but also engaged citizens of the world.
Today, experiences abroad are more important than ever, as students pursue career paths and life goals in a world of increasingly interconnected cultures. Economically, politically, and technologically, our students find their lives linked to people and places all around the globe. The best way for Indiana University to prepare students for a world of intense connectivity is to provide them with diverse opportunities to follow their passions out into the world. Many students seek out intensive language and cultural studies programs in other countries, while others find personally and professionally fulfilling experiences with internships and service programs abroad.
Regardless of the passions that drive your student, IU Bloomington’s Office of Overseas Study is an invaluable resource for finding the overseas experience that best suits his or her interests and goals. The staff members there guide students step-by-step through the process of choosing from among our more than 300 programs spanning more than 50 countries. They offer assistance with the application process and logistical concerns such as passports and student visas, and they also share first-hand experiences from their own time abroad. The staff includes a number of Peer Counselors, undergraduates who spent time in one of our programs abroad and are eager to share their stories and advice with their fellow students.
As we begin a new academic year here on the Bloomington campus, many of our students are looking for opportunities to follow their passions abroad. The application deadlines for many Spring 2016 programs are coming in September. This means that the first weeks of the Fall Semester are the perfect time for your student to visit the Office of Overseas Study, talk with peer counselors and other staff, and choose the program that will take him or her from Bloomington out into the world, and back again.
This past summer, Aysha returned to China and South Korea, this time as student ambassador for IU2U, a program that brings together current IU students, faculty and staff with admitted international students and their parents. “I want to continue to travel around the world, as long as I have the opportunities,” Aysha said. “I have become very passionate about the idea of every student at IU traveling beyond U.S. borders at least one time during college.”
All my very best,
Provost and Executive Vice President