College of Engineering students can partake in a new suite of study abroad opportunities, thanks to a recent partnership between Oregon State University and Global Engineering Education Exchange (GE3). This consortium-based exchange program allows undergraduate engineering students to study abroad at universities in Asia, Australia, Europe, Latin America, and the Middle East.
The GE3 partnership comes on the heels of a new international minor, the only minor offered through the College of Engineering. By combining an international experience with courses from a generalized Global Core, thematic electives, and a signature course, the minor provides a transcript-visible way to certify understanding of the intercultural needs of modern engineers.
International Programs Coordinator Caine Francis said the partnership and new minor broaden the college’s exchange portfolio and provides unique opportunities for students.
“Joining Global E3 increased our study abroad program offerings for engineers by 26 institutions across 10 countries, from Malaysia to Indonesia to the Netherlands,” he said. “A minor in international engineering allows our students to demonstrate their passion for engineering, which is supported by their dedication to global engagement.”
GE3 has particular appeal for engineering students with its strictly technical programs, among a host of others. “You could be a student who wants to go abroad and only do the Baccalaureate Core. You could go abroad for the entire year and study engineering in French. Chances are, we have a program for you,” he said.
And unlike the majority of study abroad options available to engineering students, The GE3 program will be managed and advised entirely in-house, providing students with personalized guidance throughout the process. Even better, a fulltime student can go abroad and still pay regular tuition and fees.
A stint abroad coupled with an international minor can be particularly beneficial to engineering students, said Francis, because the profession increasingly demands a global perspective. “Few professional fields have the type of global impact that engineering and technology do. Regardless of whether you are a soon-to-be professional engineer who wants to work for a multi-national firm or you aspire to work for a startup in Corvallis, you will only benefit by having the type of intercultural competencies that emerge from international experiences.”
Perhaps more importantly, living in another country can instill a sense of respect and responsibility within a person’s everyday life.
“When you engage in an intensive international and intercultural experience, you start seeing commonalities across cultures, more so than the differences,” said Francis.
–Abby P. Metzger