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Welcome, First-Year Students!

Welcome to St. Thomas!

The Office of Study Abroad is truly glad you’re here. Since we aren’t able to meet in person during Orientation & Registration this summer, we have compiled some resources specifically for you, the class of 2024. Take a look, and we will see you soon! 

Studying abroad is a truly unique experience, and our programs are designed to help you grow academically, personally, and professionally. In fact, St. Thomas alums consistently rank study abroad as their most impactful college experience! 

As a first-year student you can study abroad as soon as this January Term (J-Term). Once you've reached sophomore standing – and maybe you already have!  you can participate in semester, academic year, and summer programs. Regardless of the major you’ve chosen or are considering, there is a program (yes, for EVERY major) that will keep you on track to graduate.  

Below is a snapshot of possibilities, along with two digital stories from past study abroad students. 

J-Term 2021 Programs  
Each of these programs fulfills a core requirement that all students must take in order to graduate. 

Theology 100 in Rome 
Fulfills: 1st Theology core requirement 
Explore the contents of the Bible and Christian history in the Catholic tradition. Understand the human experience as interpreted by major areas of Christian theology including revelation, God, creation, Jesus and the Church. Learn Rome’s role in Christian history and experience the cultural expressions of Christianity found throughout the city. 

To Apply: This program is reserved for first-year students only. We encourage you to apply by the priority deadline of Friday, Sept. 11, 2020; limited spaces are available. Applications will be accepted after Sept. 11 on a space-available basis until the final application deadline of Oct. 1, 2020. 

Brilliant! Art in London 
Fulfills: Fine Arts, Writing Across the Curriculum (WI), Art History Minor/Major AH 150 
Engage in the up-close-and-personal study of great works of art from across the globe and experience some of the most iconic architecture in the world! 

The Person and the Good: East/West Hawaii 
Fulfills: PHIL 110, first Philosophy core requirement 
Engage with a set of questions related to the notion of human personhood, its ethical implications, and its relation to questions about the nature of the divine—with a specifically Eastern focus. 

Earth, Environment, and Society in Southern Spain 
Fulfills: Lab Science core, Geology minor/major, Sustainability minor, Environmental Studies minor/major 
Study geologic processes affecting humans and the many environmental issues facing society.  With its spectacular mountains, dramatic coastline and lovely agricultural valleys that have been shaped by recent active tectonic motions, southern Spain has a range of landscapes where we can examine geological features and processes. 

Fall 2021 Program

Rome Empower  
Designed for first-semester sophomores, the Rome Empower Program offers a unique St Thomas community along with courses fulfilling core requirements, helping you stay on track for graduation.  

  • Choose up to four courses from a list of classes fulfilling core requirementsYou will also take a 2-credit Italian language course. 
  • Live with your fellow student cohort members in the St Thomas Bernardi Residence along with St. Thomas faculty directors and the on-site resident director. 

If you would like to apply for this program, attend an information session during the fall 2020 semester, and submit your application by the priority application deadline of December 15, 2020.  

J-Term programs are typically around 2-3 weeks and consist of an immersive study of one course. Summer programs range in duration from 3-9 weeks and can include 1-3 courses, as well as internship and research opportunities. Some programs are led by St Thomas faculty and attended by St Thomas students, others are through our partner organizations and attended by students from throughout the U.S. These programs typically change from year to year and are announced about a year in advance. Click here to view the 2021 J-Term programs with no pre-requisites.

Studying abroad for a semester or academic year is an opportunity to truly immerse yourself in a new culture and begin to understand it on a deeper level. You will take a full course load, and you might also be able to volunteer, conduct research, or complete an internship. St Thomas offers semester programs led by St Thomas faculty for cohorts of St Thomas students, as well as programs through our partner organizations taught by local faculty and attended by St Thomas, U.S., international, and local students. With such diversity of programs, there IS an option that will fit YOUR academic schedule. 

Advisors in the Office of Study Abroad are ready to help you find a program that fits your academic and personal goals.   

Financial aid can be applied to semester study abroad programs, which makes the cost of a semester abroad comparable to being on-campus. Additional scholarships are available for semester programs, as well as summer and January Term programs. There are some scholarships specifically for first-year students!

St.Thomas strives to holistically support all students as they study abroad.While certainly not comprehensive, our Diversity & Identity page offers some resources and considerations around identity and the study abroad experienceKnow that the Office of Study Abroad and Student Diversity & Inclusion Services are always available as resources.

We look forward to talking with you this fall! If you want to jump in right away, take a look at our online First Step Session video, and How to Choose a Program guide.

Nick's Story

Nick spent a J-Term in Uganda studying global health.

Nikki's Story

Nikki, a Biology major, spent a semester in Turks and Caicos studying marine biology.