Why CIS Abroad for Faculty Led?

As more and more faculty leaders head overseas with student groups, the need for assistance on the ground increases. Faculty members have historically been responsible for not only teaching the course, but also overseeing program reservations, payments, on-site crises, logistical changes, risk management, and everything else that comes with these programs. As an education abroad organization, we recognize that putting all of these responsibilities on one person or one office directly affects the quality of the program.

Since 2004, we have closely collaborated with study abroad offices and faculty leaders to deliver the highest program quality possible. How do we do this, and what makes us so successful?

True customization: Every course is different, and in turn every program will be different. By customizing each aspect of the program, we provide faculty with an opportunity to create an itinerary that best meets the learning objectives of your course and directly aligns with your academic needs and expectations.

On-Site Staff: Every program we operate includes a 24/7 staff member to manage not only the logistics of the program, but also those minor incidents and major emergencies that can arise during the time abroad. This full-time staff support allows the faculty leader(s) to focus on meeting the academic objectives of the course. Without this 24/7 support staff focused exclusively on the program, faculty are left to manage everything entirely on their own.

What's Included

On-site Staff and Guides

We value the need to have staff on the ground available to you 24/7. Our trained on-site program coordinators and site directors are there to assist you with logistical changes, cultural curriculum, student incidents and on-site emergencies. In some locations your itinerary may also require a licensed guide, which we can provide in addition to your onsite program coordinator.

Round-trip and Domestic Airfare

In need of a group flight or assistance with your travel reservations? Through our partnership with STA Travel, we are proud to offer these services for your next program. STA is available to provide advice on securing flights without putting your program cost out of range!

Ground Transportation

From touchdown in country to take off, you don’t have to worry about getting from point A to point B. Whether by vetted and approved private coach, or by local and public transportation, we will get you there safe and sound.

Pre-Departure and On-Site Orientation Materials

Where are we staying? What is the local currency? Who will be picking us up at the airport? These are just a few of the questions often asked prior to departure. Through our online pre-departure orientation materials we’ll be sure that no question is left unanswered. Additionally, in each destination abroad, our onsite staff will lead the group through an on-site health and safety orientation.

Housing

We budget for the accommodations best suited to your group needs and learning outcomes. Your own housing recommendations are also welcome and we’ll do our best to accommodate your top choices, taking one worry off your mind.

Excursions and Academic Visits

This is where customization is key! Our program coordinators are prepared to collaborate with you to design your ideal program. Tourist sites are certainly a draw for students, and you don’t want to exclude them from your itinerary, but leave it to us to help identify excursions and visits that directly align and further enhance your academic content in addition to the main attractions!

Classroom/Facility Space

We recognize that getting out of the traditional classroom is one of the draws in offering a study abroad program, however, at times pre-arranging meeting space is essential to meet university required contact hours. Inform your program coordinator of any specific classroom needs and let them do the rest.

Health Insurance

Health insurance is essential for all study abroad participants. Through our partnership with CISI we are proud to offer the industry’s best. If your campus already provides comparable coverage, let us know and we can leave this out of your program cost. Looking for travel or trip insurance? Contact us to learn more about additional coverage.

Promotional Support

You may be a one-person office or a faculty leader with no time to create your own materials. We get it, and we’re here to help! We are happy to help by creating program flyers tailored just for your program. Additionally, our University Relations representative for your institution is available to help with on-campus promotion, either at the study abroad fair or during another visit.

Meals

Food is more than a basic need. When visiting a new country food is an incredible foyer into a culture, and meal times provide a delicious way to interact with the local population during your program! On all of our programs we include pre-arranged group welcome and farewell meals. As for the rest of the time you’re abroad, your program coordinator will work with you to determine whether or not you’d like to build in additional group meals.

Gratuities

We take care of the gratuities for you! That’s right, there’s no awkward moment of passing around a hat to collect cash from your students to tip the guide, driver, or wait staff. Even better, there’s no pressure on you to add to the pot to ensure an appropriate tip. Our onsite staff will manage that for you!

Special Requests

See something that’s missing? Ask us to add it in!

Destinations

“Where do you offer programming?” Well, where do you want to go? “We go everywhere” might seem like a stretch, but it is important to find a partner who will vet the location, oversee program logistics and be on the ground to manage crises that may arise.

For those reasons, we are proud to offer faculty-led programming to almost any country in the world. Many institutions and faculty leaders are interested in designing programs to locations that best match their areas of expertise and complement their course content. When venturing into uncharted territory, or a new destination for your university, there is a lot of additional initial work involved to ensure program quality and student safety. We recognize how much time and effort that takes, and we’re here to do that for you. So, where have we designed programs? Check out the list below and see! Are you looking for a country that isn’t listed? Don’t let that stop you from asking us…it may in fact be a destination we can customize!

  • Argentina
  • Australia
  • Austria
  • Bahamas
  • Belgium
  • Bolivia
  • Brazil
  • Cambodia
  • Canada
  • China
  • Costa Rica
  • Croatia
  • Czech Republic
  • Denmark
  • Dominican Republic
  • Ecuador
  • England
  • Estonia
  • Finland
  • France
  • Germany
  • Ghana
  • Greece
  • Hungary
  • Iceland
  • India
  • Indonesia
  • Ireland
  • Italy
  • Jamaica
  • Japan
  • Malaysia
  • Martinique
  • Morocco
  • New Zealand
  • Netherlands
  • Northern Ireland
  • Norway
  • Peru
  • Poland
  • Puerto Rico
  • Scotland
  • Singapore
  • South Africa
  • South Korea
  • Spain
  • Sweden
  • Switzerland
  • Tanzania
  • Thailand
  • Ukraine
  • USA (Hawaii & More)
  • Vietnam

Sample Programs

Engineering/Business: Sustainable Cities

9 days in Denmark, Sweden and Germany

By 2050, 70% of the world’s inhabitants will live in big cities, consuming 80% of the world’s energy and producing 75% of all global carbon emissions. Students were presented with insights on how three major European cities – Copenhagen, Malmo and Berlin are tackling sustainability head on creating some of the most livable cities in the world. Issues such as energy, housing, livability, mobility, green investments and technology were addressed during the program.

Medical: Comparative Healthcare Systems

16 days in Ireland

This overarching glimpse into the Irish healthcare system had students visiting and observing and interacting with local speech therapists, physiotherapists, and other medical professionals. This comparative program visited hospitals, universities, and sporting events.

Fashion Design: Fashion Capitals of the World

5 weeks in NYC, London, Paris and Milan

This unique 5 week program gave fashion design students a glimpse into the fashion industry. From product development and design in Milan, to showcases in Paris and store-fronts in NYC – this program included it all.

Tourism, Hospitality Management & Culinary Arts

3 weeks in Aix en Provence, France

This program provided students an opportunity to live with French families and attend class in the morning followed by excursions in the afternoon. Students compared and contrasted local, boutique hotel management and high-end international chains, practiced culinary techniques, and visited local farms and markets.

Social Work: NGO’s of Southeast Asia

16 days in Thailand and Cambodia

This two-week program traveled to two cities in each of these countries to visit and learn about the management of a variety of non-profit organizations. The course was targeted towards non-profit management students, and provided an opportunity for the group to speak directly with those in the field, as well as visit some of SE Asia’s top sites like Angkor Wat!

Sociology: Human Sexuality in Europe

1 week (spring break) in Amsterdam

This week long program provided an embedded option for students to enroll in the course during spring break. Students to recognized the extent to which a culture’s structures and values may oppress, marginalize, alienate, or create privilege and power.

Math: Mathematicians of the Renaissance

3 weeks in Northern Italy

Based primarily in Florence, this program took advantage of Italy’s rich art history. With visits to places including Vinci, Pisa and Rome, this course explored Italy and the Renaissance through the lens of mathematician-artists, like Da Vinci, who made lasting contributions to both science and art.

Sports: Kinesiology, Culture & Adventure

8 days in Peru

This program allowed students to evaluate the place of sport in contemporary global society from a critical cultural perspective. Split between the distinct regions of the coast and the highlands, this program offered a unique insight into Peru’s nutrition, recreation, culture, and sport.

Conflict Resolution

9 days in Northern Ireland

Students spent their spring break in Northern Ireland learning about the country’s turbulent political past and what action is being taken today to keep peace. The program exposed students to a variety of opinions and sides of the conflict which encouraged them to be open minded throughout the program.

International Business

10 days in Barcelona

This program allowed students the opportunity to learn about international business practices through visits to both locally- and internationally-owned businesses, including a brewery, the port, and a vineyard. Cultural activities included a cooking class, city tours, and a flamenco show.

Higher Education

1 week in South Africa

Students to gained a deeper understanding of higher education in South Africa and how it deals with certain issues from a comparative perspective. Students met with administrators, government officials, and local students to compare and contrast Higher Education systems between the US and South Africa.

LGBTQ: LGBT Views of Europe

1 month in various European cities

Using literary works and art, in combination with social history of civil rights movements, this course explored cultural trends in LGBT communities and their acceptance in Western Europe. The course culminated in a three-week journey to four key cities for Western European LGBT people-London, Amsterdam, Berlin, and Barcelona.

Faculty Feedback

You guys rock; simply continue being you. You are extremely professional, helpful and willing to accommodate our needs. You do everything possible to make the program successful. Whatever changes are needed to make this program better, in my opinion, need to come from us. Thank you all for making this program possible. It was a wonderful experience for our students and your professionalism facilitated our jobs as teachers.

Dr. Jose Torres, Professor of English - SUNY Plattsburgh

Contact Us

Talk to us

Get in touch with our team! We’d love to hear from you. Please fill out this quick inquiry form. It takes less than 5 minutes to complete, and you’ll be well on your way to making your program a reality. We will be in touch shortly.

Request a proposal

Once you are ready to build your program, fill out a proposal questionnaire. Answer the questions to the best of your ability, and let us know if there’s an area you could use more help with. We aim to turn around your proposal within a 2-week timeframe. If we have any questions along the way we’ll reach out, if not, sit back and anxiously anticipate what we design.

FAQ

Fantastic! Many of our faculty leaders and institutions already have their own great contacts they wish to work with, or have worked with for years. Our goals include ensuring that all logistics are streamlined, payments are made on time, risk is mitigated, and emergencies are handled properly. It’s great when we can collaborate with you and your contacts, whether it be a favorite local guide or a colleague who we can reach out to about arranging a business visit for your group. Know that we respect your contacts as your contacts, and we are not interested in making them ours – we just want to ensure all goes smoothly and it is important that we are all on the same page should changes need to be made during the program.

Perfect, we’re happy to look into housing your group there! Staying in a familiar location can help ensure peace of mind leading up to your departure. We will also be transparent with you if we feel it might not be adequate for your group (dynamics are quite different than when traveling solo or with smaller numbers) and we’ll suggest alternatives comparable to your preference. Please note that sometimes earlier deposits are necessary to guarantee specific lodging.

Yes, they can! The best time for friends and family to visit is before or after the program. If they want to join you during the program, please speak with your program coordinator about working out a guest fee and if there are any limitations to their participation.

We recommend starting between 12-18 months prior to departure. Time flies, and you want to be sure your program is laid out well enough to begin promoting the experience to students. At the 12 month mark you’ll want to start showcasing the opportunity to students, with the hopes of securing the group around the 5-6 month mark. Be sure to check with your study abroad office, as their timelines may differ and might in fact call for much earlier preparation.

Great question! We customize the itinerary to meet your objectives, and thus every program price is unique. What factors are considered in estimating the cost? The length of the program, the time of year you are traveling, the type of housing you use, the number of excursions included, the number of meals included, the type of transportation planned, and the list goes on. The great thing about this is that we can continue to tweak the itinerary so that even the price is customized to your needs. Please let us know if faculty fees should not be built into student costs, or if particular line items such as classroom space and academic visits are to be covered by another budget stream (collaborate with your study abroad office). We’ll be happy to pull out certain portions to reduce the out-of-pocket costs for students, outside of what their tuition and university fees will cover.

Don’t see your destination listed? We still may be able to help you! One of the things our partners love most about us is our flexibility and “can do” attitude. We love a challenge, we have the experience venturing into new countries and the staff to assess the risks involved. So, when filling out your program questionnaire, go ahead, list your preferred destination and we’ll be in touch!

This varies by program depending on the variety and number of arrangements your program entails, as well as the host country business culture. In some places, we may not be able to confirm the exact details of a business visit until a week or two before departure. We know that this can be stressful, but let us worry about it for you! We’ll do our best to keep you informed along the way. Although we will provide a “final” itinerary at least 2 weeks prior to departure, as with all travel, the group should always be prepared for last minute changes, adjustments, etc. Which is again why it’s so helpful to have CIS Abroad staff on the ground to sort out the details!

As a full service organization, we prefer just that – providing it all. There are programs in which we might not manage ALL of the logistics due to the institution’s connections with local exchange partners, for example, but unfortunately we don’t do just airfare, or just housing.

Yes, and as many of our testimonials will attest, most faculty can’t imagine their program without them! We fully recognize a faculty leader may have lived in a particular destination and know it inside and out, but our staff are there to ensure someone is ready in the event of a logistical change, student crisis or larger scale threat. “Ok, but we are sending two people from our institution.” Excellent! We will still have our staff person on the ground. Our on-site program coordinators are trained in student support, international crisis management, and are there so that your faculty leader(s) can focus on teaching the course, while we worry about the rest. Also consider, and it’s happened before, what if something happens to you?

All students who successfully participate on a faculty-led program managed by our team will officially be considered CIS Abroad Alumni, at which point they will have access to our Go Again Grants and other opportunities to continue their education abroad!