FSU among top 5 in latest Open Doors study-abroad report

FSU ranks fifth in overall study-abroad enrollments and third among public universities for study-abroad enrollments according to a new report from the Institute of International Education. (FSU International Programs)
FSU ranks fifth in overall study-abroad enrollments and third among public universities for study-abroad enrollments according to a new report from the Institute of International Education. (FSU International Programs)

With a rich history of supporting learning and scholarship in programs around the world, Florida State University has earned top-five rankings in multiple categories in a new report from the Institute of International Education (IIE).

FSU is ranked fifth among institutions overall and third among public universities for study abroad enrollments in the IIE Open Doors 2023 Report, with 2,469 students studying abroad in the 2021-2022 academic year. FSU also ranked third overall in enrollment for short-term study abroad programs (1,731 students) and fourth overall in enrollment for long-term study abroad programs (216 students).

“We are pleased to once again be ranked so highly among our peers in the number of students we send abroad,” said Jim Pitts, director of International Programs at FSU. “These rankings demonstrate FSU’s continued institutional commitment to provide meaningful education abroad opportunities for our students. We know from independent research that education abroad provides transformative learning experiences, which have a positive impact on academic, education and professional outcomes.”

Open Doors also ranked the top three leading destinations for study abroad as Italy, the United Kingdom and Spain. FSU’s International Programs maintains a year-round presence in all three countries with study centers in Florence, London and Valencia. FSU also has a branch campus in the Republic of Panama in Panama City.

Other study abroad opportunities offered by FSU International Programs include programs in Grenada, Costa Rica, Croatia, Czech Republic, France and Switzerland. This summer FSU International Programs is launching a new two-week program in Kosovo titled “Human Rights in Europe’s Newest Democracy.” The program intensively focuses on human rights victim issues that emerged from the Balkan Wars in the 1990s.

“International Programs has both deep roots and an entrepreneurial spirit, positioning us well to continue to support the university’s mission and goals,” said Louisa Blenman, associate director of International Programs at FSU. “We have ‘tried and true’ broad curricular offerings, as well as innovative discipline-specific programs. Regardless of the program or discipline, we help prepare students to address current and future global challenges.”

Over the summer, FSU President Richard McCullough and First Lady Jai Vartikar visited FSU’s study centers in London, Florence and Valencia with FSU Board of Trustees Chair Peter Collins and his wife, Jennifer Collins, an FSU alumnus and member on the Board of the FSU International Programs Association, Inc. They had the opportunity to personally see FSU’s incredible facilities abroad and speak to students about their life-changing experiences.

“The foresight of previous presidents to buy these buildings and create these programs is incredible,” McCullough said. “I think there are additional opportunities for us to create sabbaticals for faculty members to go overseas and expand FSU’s international presence and reputation.”

In addition, Vice President for Student Affairs Amy Hecht taught a Leadership and Change course focused on global perspectives at the FSU London Study Centre this past summer.

“Study abroad at its core is experiential learning,” Hecht said. “Our students are living in a new country and navigating transportation, grocery shopping, nightlife, culture and schoolwork. My course used the city as a teaching tool, and it’s something the program encourages. Why would a student want to be lectured in a classroom when they go study abroad? They want to explore and have these unique experiences that London (or Florence or Valencia) can provide.”

Stories about experiences like these can be found on Noles Abroad, a blog and podcast aimed at celebrating the people, places, and moments that have contributed to the growth of FSU International Programs on FSU’s main campus and beyond.

For more information on study abroad opportunities, visit international.fsu.edu. For more details on the Open Doors 2023 Report, visit opendoorsdata.org.