History of The College of Global Studies

For much of its history, Arcadia University has been actively involved in international education. In June of 1948, a professor at Beaver College – the institution now known as Arcadia University – took a class of 17 students to Europe for ten weeks to see first-hand the economic effects of World War II and the post-war efforts to re-build. This was a pioneering effort in a time when other colleges had yet to resurrect the study abroad programs that the recent World War had interrupted.

The success of that summer study program spawned several more programs in other disciplines, so for the next several summers both our own students and those invited from neighboring institutions took part in Beaver's European study tours. Then in 1965, the Center for Education Abroad was established to enable American undergraduates to study for credit in fully-integrated programs in Britain, Austria and elsewhere. Ever since then, Arcadia has been a national leader in education abroad.

Today, Arcadia provides undergraduates access to some 140 programs abroad in Australia, Chile, China, Cuba, England, France, Germany, Greece, India, Ireland, Italy, Mexico, New Zealand, Scotland, South Africa, Spain, Turkey and Wales. Nearly 3,000 students from over 300 colleges and universities participate in Arcadia University's programs abroad each year. Arcadia continuously strives to provide the highest level of support and service to its program participants wherever they are in the world.

In 2009, the Arcadia University Center for Education Abroad transformed into Arcadia University The College of Global Studies through a total restructuring of the University Academic Affairs. The University is now divided into three colleges: The College of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences, The College of Business, Health and Sciences, and The College of Global Studies. It is the first College of its kind to become a full-fledged member of the academy with all the attendant rights and responsibilities thereof.

Arcadia University's trustees, administration and faculty collaborate with The College of Global Studies to find creative and effective ways to implement that component of the University's mission which involves "preparing students for life in a changing global society." Arcadia's curriculum reflects an international perspective; newly developed undergraduate and graduate programs have an international emphasis. Some academic majors now require a semester or more of overseas experience. Arcadia's unique "First Year Study Abroad Experience" uses The College's overseas resources and structures to support a full semester of education abroad for first semester undergraduates, and the "Spring Preview" programs allow every first-year student at Arcadia University the opportunity to spend spring break abroad (in London or Edinburgh) for a nominal fee.

Arcadia University's innovations and leadership in campus internationalization have been recognized by the American Council on Education. Arcadia is one of the eight colleges and universities in the country whose efforts at institution-wide internationalization constitute "promising practices." (See Promising Practices: Excellence in Comprehensive Internationalization ACE 2002. This publication is available at www.acenet.edu)