University of Sussex joins initiative to double number of Americans studying abroad

The University of Sussex has joined a worldwide initiative to help more American university students to gain international experience through study abroad programs.

The Institute of International Education’s (IIE) Generation Study Abroad project seeks to double the number of US students studying abroad by the end of the decade.  

This is one of more than 450 new commitments announced by the IIE.

Professor Clare Mackie, Deputy Vice-Chancellor, said: “An important part of the student experience at Sussex is the international mix of students on campus, and the opportunity for UK students to spend part of their degree studying abroad.

“Having a vibrant and attractive campus and bringing students from all over the world to Sussex means we can offer a better student experience overall. 

“The Generation Study Abroad initiative fits perfectly with our ethos of creating global citizens and we are very pleased to commit to it.” 

In signing up to the initiative, Sussex has pledged to build upon progress already made in Study Abroad and international partnerships. In particular by: 

  • Strengthening Sussex Choice, which allows Sussex students to make the most of their degree by choosing elective modules and pathways, studying abroad, or gaining a work placement
  • Creating and enhancing new student exchange partnerships with liberal arts colleges and state universities in the US, building upon the 45 agreements already in operation
  • Providing opportunities for US students to spend a summer doing undergraduate research, as part of the Junior Research Associates scheme
  • Opening up as many modules as possible to students studying abroad at Sussex
  • Better information and signposting online
  • Increasing attendance at Study Abroad fairs 

The University offers financial support to those wishing to spend a year studying abroad, reducing tuition fees to 15% during that year and providing an additional £3,000 scholarship for those students eligible for the financial support provided by the First-Generation Scholars scheme. Students are also able to receive the full maintenance loan from Student Finance England.

The University was founded with a firmly international outlook and Sussex graduates play leading roles in politics, business, the arts and community organisations across the world. The University has links with universities on every continent and staff and students drawn from more than 125 nations.

The University is also the best place in the UK to study American Studies, according to The Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2016, and has the widest-ranging summer school in the UK, attracting 500 American students a year.

The US-based IIE launched Generation Study Abroad early this year in the belief that the number and proportion of students who graduate with an educational experience abroad is far too low. Currently, fewer than 10 per cent of all US university students study abroad at some point in their academic career. 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. 

By: James Hakner
Last updated: Monday, 12 October 2015