USD currently sends about 225 students overseas annually, and many others take domestic trips, said Eric Leise, assistant director for its Center for Academic & Global Engagement. Short-term and semester-long programs abroad are more popular than year-long commitments. Europe and Latin America are the most popular destinations.

Under a new partnership with the Institute of International Education’s Generation Study Abroad initiative, USD will: increase the number of international partnerships with overseas universities; use new marketing strategies aimed at underrepresented groups in study abroad; redesign pre-departure and reentry orientations and services to better integrate students’ overseas experiences into their education; and encourage the development and implementation of new faculty-led study abroad initiatives.

“As the flagship university in the state, we are dedicated to becoming a regional leader in the areas of diversity and inclusiveness,” said Jim Moran, Ph.D., USD provost and vice president for academic affairs. “We recognize the importance of graduating globally aware students through coursework with international components, as well as research and service opportunities.”

More than 400 colleges and universities worldwide have committed to specific goals to increase the number of U.S. students studying abroad. Currently, fewer than 10 percent of all U.S. college students study in another country at some point in their academic career, according to the Open Doors Report on International and Educational Exchange.

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