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More Students Studying Abroad than Ever Before

January 1, 2003

One hundred and fifty-eight Bentley College students will study abroad this semester, the largest number in the college's history.

Jill Perry, director of the Cronin International Center, attributes the increased interest in study abroad, in part, to world events of the past 14 months.

"Since September 11, 2001 I have seen more coverage of international events in the news," Perry said. "Students are realizing that they don't know as much about the world around them as they should. And they are now more interested in going abroad. They see the relevance of an international experience to their careers and their lives."

According to the Institute for International Education, many colleges across the country have seen an increase in the number of students applying for and participating in study abroad programs in the past year. (For details, visit the IIE web site.)

Perry expects study abroad numbers to continue to remain high. Eight sections of INT 104 Cross-Cultural Understanding, the prerequisite course for all study abroad participants, have filled for the spring semester.

"I am delighted to see that students are seeing the value in study abroad; that they are up for the challenge," Perry said.

The number of Bentley students participating in semester-long study abroad programs has more than doubled over the past six years, from 70 students in the 1997-98 academic year to an expected 196 students this year. But during the past two years significantly more students have studied abroad in the spring than the fall. Perry attributes much of this shift to the structure of the business core curriculum, which makes it easier for students to take classes overseas in the spring.

Safety continues to be a concern for students heading overseas (and their parents). In light of this, the Education Abroad staff has made extra effort to educate students about responsible travel and encourage them to take ownership for their safety abroad.

"We have what we call a 'triangle model,'" Perry explained. "The responsibility for a student's safety rests with us, with our partner institutions abroad and with the student. We cannot predict everything that may happen to a student overseas, so we talk to them about coming up with their own personal action plan."

Education Abroad staff members help students formulate the plan during pre-departure orientations by providing them information on emergency contacts, resources in their host country and tips on being a savvy traveler.

At Bentley, the most popular semester-long study abroad programs are those in Australia and England, but students also study in Austria, Italy and several other European countries. A group of eight undergraduates will be the first Bentley group to enroll at the University of Hong Kong, China in the spring.

In addition to the semester-long study abroad programs, more than 95 students will participate in short term study abroad programs over winter and spring break. Faculty from the Economics, English, History, International Studies and Law departments will lead study tours to Belgium, the Czech Republic, England, Ethopia, Greece, India and Turkey.

For more information on study abroad at Bentley, visit the Education Abroad web site at http://ecampus.bentley.edu/dept/sa/index.html.

BENTLEY UNIVERSITY is one of the nation’s leading business schools, dedicated to preparing a new kind of business leader – one with the deep technical skills, broad global perspective, and high ethical standards required to make a difference in an ever-changing world. Our rich, diverse arts and sciences program, combined with an advanced business curriculum, prepares informed professionals who make an impact in their chosen fields. Located on a classic New England campus minutes from Boston, Bentley is a dynamic community of leaders, scholars and creative thinkers. The Graduate School emphasizes the impact of technology on business practice, in offerings that include MBA and Master of Science programs, PhD programs in accountancy and in business, and customized executive education programs. The university enrolls approximately 4,100 full-time undergraduate, 140 adult part-time undergraduate, 1,430 graduate, and 43 doctoral students. Bentley is accredited by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges; AACSB International – The Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business; and the European Quality Improvement System, which benchmarks quality in management and business education. For more information, please visit www.bentley.edu

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