The total number of Texas A&M students who received credit for studying abroad during the most recent reporting period, the 2014-15 academic year, was 3,219.
“It is gratifying to know so many Aggies are choosing to participate in Study Abroad programs because it is our job as a university to provide transformational learning experiences and prepare our students for a global society,” says Texas A&M President Michael K. Young. “These programs allow us to further our mission, far beyond our borders, to educate, serve, discover and innovate.”
Texas A&M Vice Provost Michael Benedik shared Young’s assessment. “We are excited to be the No. 1-ranked public university for the number of students earning credit while studying abroad,” he says. “This reflects the Texas A&M’s commitment to providing unparalleled access to a variety of high impact learning opportunities for our students, of which study abroad is a major part. But most of all, it reflects the efforts of our faculty to provide these opportunities.”
Texas A&M’s Study Abroad Programs Office offers a wide variety of international experiences including study, research, internships, volunteer and service learning programs.
Study Abroad Director Jane Flaherty says her office provides support for all Aggie students engaging in transformational, international experiences. “We provide 24/7 support for students while they are overseas. Approximately 180 faculty work with our office to prepare for taking students abroad. We appreciate the support and collaboration from across the university, which is reflected in the increase in the number of Aggies who are taking advantage of these opportunities.”
On the IIE ranking that combined private and public institutions, Texas A&M ranked No. 2 in the nation; New York University, a private institution, ranked first.
Study abroad opportunities are available for all Texas A&M students, freshmen through Ph.D. candidates. Students can be in a large group or study on an individual program.
The various types of study abroad programs can be as short as a week or as long as an academic year, says Flaherty, adding that the most popular destinations for Aggies are in Western Europe: Germany, Italy, Spain, France and the UK. Outside of Europe, Costa Rica is the most travelled to locale for Aggies, she notes. Texas A&M’s Soltis Center for Research & Education is located in Costa Rica.
The College of Liberal Arts sends the most students abroad, followed by the College of Engineering at No. 2, and Mays Business School at No. 3, according to Katy Lane, assistant director at the Study Abroad Programs Office.