Pacific students can plan to study internationally in faculty-led programs

Anthony Maximov

Pacific alumnus Anthony Maximov ‘20 during his semester abroad 

More than a year after the coronavirus pandemic halted international travel for most universities, University of the Pacific will ramp up study abroad starting this fall.

Pacific students can study in South Korea this fall and the university will launch its biggest study abroad faculty-led portfolio yet in summer 2022.

"We’re thrilled to be able to resume these outstanding programs after a long hiatus," said Ryan Griffith, Pacific's director of international programs and services. "Our students will soon have culturally and intellectually rich opportunities worldwide."

International study has been strongly emphasized at Pacific dating back to the university's cluster colleges—Raymond, Callison and Covell (1962-1986). These colleges adapted the Oxford and Cambridge model to an American setting, integrating faculty and students into living and learning communities.

Callison College was dedicated to the study of international relations and required students in their second year to spend a year abroad in Asia. Covell College was unique because all courses were taught in Spanish. Half of the students were from North America and half of the students were from South and Central America. Most students chose to participate in a semester abroad in Costa Rica.

Although the cluster colleges have been closed since 1986, their emphasis on global education has continued in Pacific's School of International Studies, the first university-based undergraduate school of international studies in California.

"Students who travel abroad come back with a global perspective in part because they have seen and heard how the rest of the world perceives the United States,” explained Griffith. “When they return and are speaking with folks in their community, they are more likely to actively listen and achieve a level of understanding and awareness that's going to help them succeed."

There is a widespread perception that study abroad is too expensive and will cause students to not graduate on time. At Pacific, students not only earn academic credits while studying overseas, but they pay regular tuition and can therefore apply all financial aid and scholarships they receive toward their education abroad.

"When our students study abroad, they pay the same tuition they would on campus and earn Pacific units through their chosen program, which will keep them on track to graduate with their class," explained Derek Bradley, Pacific's assistant director of education abroad.

Many Pacific students, like Sarah Hess '21, a pre-law and history major, have seized the opportunity to study abroad for the summer, a semester, or even a full academic year. 

"My experience in Barcelona, Spain, made me a stronger and more independent person," said Hess. "Living in another country can be overwhelming at first, but the study abroad program at Pacific really prepared me. I found a freedom in traveling and experiencing new cultures that I will carry with me the rest of my life."

Pacific alumna Emily Olson '17 had the chance to spend a month in Italy as part of the Italian immersion program. 

"During my time in Italy I developed a new sense of confidence, cultural awareness and determination," she said. "I learned so much in such a short period of time. It was one of the most incredible experiences of my life.”

In summer 2022, students will have the opportunity to study with some of their Pacific professors in the following countries:

  • Salzburg, Austria, "The Art of Negotiation" will be led by Clémence Kucera, assistant dean of graduate, online, and international programs at the McGeorge School of Law and feature special guest lecturer, Scott Boras ’77, ’82
  • Assisi, Italy, "Italian Language Immersion" will be led by Susan Giraldez, associate professor of Spanish
  • London, England, "Global Sport Management" will be led by Pete Schroeder, associate professor of sport management
  • Dublin, Ireland, "Social Change and Equity/Diversity in Social Systems" will be led by Laura Hallberg, assistant dean, learning leadership & change programs
  • Dijon, France, "Global Entrepreneurial Creativity and Leadership" will be led by Lewis Gale, professor of business
  • Seoul, South Korea, "Statics and Korean Language" will be led by Chi-Wook Lee, professor of mechanical engineering

Students interested in studying abroad or participating in the faculty-led abroad experience can visit Pacific's Education Abroad webpage or email