Arcadia Pioneers Modern Education Abroad
Sixty years of excellence in global education began on the saddle of a bicycle, for two dollars a day. In the summer of 1948, the world looked ahead to a brighter future. Gone was the extreme cataclysm and privation of the Second World War, but deep scars remained for the nations of Europe and their people. Moreover, the cooperative spirit of educational exchange between nations, which had flourished modestly prior to the war’s advent, was all but nonexistent.
Into this landscape arrived a Beaver College economics instructor, his wife, and seventeen undergraduate women. The group had sailed from New York to Southampton, England, on a mission of education and discovery. An interest in post-war rebuilding efforts would carry this small but determined cohort through a summer’s-worth of adventures. Cycling through England, Belgium, and France, in weathers both benign and challenging, they studied diligently, lived prudently, and lodged frugally. And they learned much more than they ever thought they would.
A World of Possibilities
This program was the precursor to what would become one of the largest and most prestigious international study operations in the United States. After that first summer, the institution now known as Arcadia University sponsored many more of these international study excursions, and finally established a College, The College of Global Studies, in 1965.
As its initial focus, the organization allowed students to study in London for U.S. college credit. The notion that American undergraduates could be immersed in studies in an English-speaking country, and have the grades and credits earned there count toward their degree programs on home campuses, was an innovative and revolutionary one. Gradually, as the Center’s vision expanded, its programs, participants, and partnering countries multiplied.
A Continuing Commitment
Today, the Arcadia University College of Global Studies works with programs in 16 countries, and serves more than 3,000 students from more than 300 American colleges and universities per year. Arcadia University and The College of Global Studies share in a vision of adapting to life in a rapidly-changing global society, and together are committed to building international understanding.