Oglethorpe University Joins Institute of International Education Coalition to Double Number of Students Who Study Abroad by End of Decade

Oglethorpe pledges to increase student study abroad participation by 40%

Oglethorpe launches GO:Rome study abroad center in summer 2014

GSA_Partner_orangeMay 21, 2014 – Oglethorpe University has pledged to join the Institute of International Education (IIE)’s Generation Study Abroad initiative to double the number of American students who study abroad by the end of the decade. The initiative also focuses on increasing the diversity of the students who study abroad, ensuring quality, and removing barriers to participation. As part of this pledge, Oglethorpe University has committed to increase its number of students who study abroad by 40% over the next five years.

“Oglethorpe is dedicated to cultivating well-rounded, global citizens,” said President Lawrence M. Schall. “We’re committed to growing the number of students who have the chance to learn through real-world situations and problem solving. We’ve witnessed the impact study abroad can have on students’ growth and perspective.”

Oglethorpe recently implemented several other initiatives and partnerships in support of global education for its students, as well as for students from other colleges and universities around the world:

  • This summer, Oglethorpe launches GO: Rome, a new study abroad center in Rome, Italy. Part of the new Global Oglethorpe (“GO”) program, GO: Rome’s inaugural semester will welcome approximately 42 students from 10 schools, including Oglethorpe, University of Alabama, Clemson University, Louisiana State University, and University of Texas. Students will be taught by Oglethorpe faculty and earn credit from the university.
  • Oglethorpe’s Atlanta Laboratory for Learning (A_LAB), founded in fall 2013, helps students to “map their four-year journey,” in a holistic approach to applying classroom theory to real world practice through study abroad, civic engagement, professional development, and undergraduate research.
  • In 2012, Oglethorpe became the academic partner of study abroad provider Global LEAD. As such, Oglethorpe approves all faculty, curricula, and credits for approximately 170 students from more than 50 colleges and universities around the country who participate in summer study abroad programs in Ecuador, Greece, and South Africa.
  • In 2012, Oglethorpe also partnered with EF (Education First), the world leader in international education. EF’s Atlanta headquarters, located on Oglethorpe’s campus, brings hundreds of international students to the university each semester.

In addition, Oglethorpe has a long history of facilitating semester-long and year-long study abroad opportunities through partnership or non-partnership schools, as well as faculty-led and short-term study abroad trips and international internships. Currently, approximately 10% of the Oglethorpe’s student population of 1,050 study abroad.

Two months after the official launch of Generation Study Abroad, the Institute of International Education has announced significant progress in advancing the major goals of the initiative. IIE’s Generation Study Abroad initiative now has over 300 commitment partners — double the number who had signed on by the March launch date. The 150 new partners who have committed to specific, actionable goals to increase the number of U.S. students studying abroad include colleges and universities of all sizes and types across the country, as well as study abroad organizations, foreign governments, and associations. Noteworthy commitments to action in this round include new scholarships and financial assistance to help students pay for study abroad, and new initiatives to reach out to underserved groups and increase the diversity of the student population that goes abroad.

A total of 308 partners have joined Generation Study Abroad to date. They include: 241 U.S. colleges and universities from 46 states; 9 non-U.S. institutions; 13 education associations; 34 study abroad organizations; 11 U.S. and foreign government entities, including the U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs. Recognizing the importance of an internationally focused workforce, IIE is also actively seeking the participation of corporations and the business community.

“Globalization has changed the way the world works, and employers are increasingly looking for workers who have international skills and expertise,” says Dr. Allan Goodman, President of IIE. “Studying abroad must be viewed as an essential component of a college degree and critical to preparing future leaders.”

IIE is launching Generation Study Abroad because the number and proportion of today’s students who graduate with an educational experience abroad is far too low. Currently, fewer than 10 percent of all U.S. college students study abroad at some point in their academic career. According to the Open Doors Report on International and Educational Exchange released by IIE last November with support from the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, 295,000 students studied abroad in 2011/12 in credit-bearing and non-credit programs. Generation Study Abroad aims to grow participation in study abroad so that the annual total reported will reach 600,000 by the end of the decade.

With 2.6 million students graduating with associates or baccalaureate degrees each year, it is clear that major segments of America’s young people are not getting the international experience they will need to advance their careers and participate in the global economy, or to work together across borders to address global issues.  Commitment partners are working to ensure that students from all backgrounds and in all fields of study have the opportunity to gain this important experience.

Generation Study Abroad will engage educators at all levels and stakeholders in the public and private sectors to drive meaningful, innovative action to increase the number of U.S. students who have the opportunity to gain international experience through academic study abroad programs, as well as internships, service learning and non-credit educational experiences. Building on its nearly 100-year commitment to study abroad, IIE has committed $2 million of its own funds to this initiative over the next 5 years.

For more information on IIE’s Generation Study Abroad initiative, and a complete list of commitment partners, go to:

Oglethorpe University has entered an era of innovation, reinvigoration, and growth with the opening of the $16M Turner Lynch Campus Center in 2013 and the launch of a $50M comprehensive campaign. Founded in 1835, Oglethorpe is Atlanta’s leading liberal arts and sciences university of 1100 students representing 34 states and 28 countries. In fall 2013, Oglethorpe opened the A_LAB (Atlanta Laboratory for Learning), an incubator for students’ real-world experiential learning through civic engagement, global education, professional development, and undergraduate research. Oglethorpe is the only university in Georgia to be named for seven consecutive years to the President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll for commitment to and achievement in community service. In 2012, Oglethorpe launched two strategic partnerships with study abroad provider Global LEAD and EF (Education First), the world leader in international education. EF’s Atlanta headquarters is located on Oglethorpe’s campus, which is also home to the OU Museum of Art and Georgia Shakespeare, a professional theatre-in-residence. Renowned for its groundbreaking core program, Oglethorpe is a member of the Annapolis Group, comprised of America’s most selective liberal arts institutions, and has been named among U.S. News & World Report’s Best Liberal Arts Colleges, Forbes’ America’s Best Colleges, and Princeton Review’s Best Southeastern Colleges. The Oglethorpe Stormy Petrels compete in the NCAA Division III Southern Athletic Association. Website: